A study by the University of Glasgow has revealed that Red meats like beef, pork and mutton might be the cause of premature ageing for people across the world. Considered the most delectable of them all and second in popularity close after chicken, it seems that despite their nutritional value, red meats are something that should come off your dietary chart.
While mass obesity and dietary negligence are not something new to be discussed in the world we live in today, the research has concentrated itself towards the lower parts of society where people eat meat the most due to its sustainable nature and relatively low cost in first world countries.
Researchers found that excess red meat ratios in food intake could lead to accelerated biological ageing and the excess phosphate could lead to premature vascular deterioration, kidney disease and heart issues.
This comes not directly from the consumption of red meat, but by not following a proper diet with regard to other foods that a person can eat to make the most out of their diet.
While most people understand this, the popular meme about a salad costing $6 and a burger $1, still stands true, leading the masses to flock to eating out more red meat and less healthy balanced foods.
With regard to the meat itself, it has a lot of positive effects; red meat is a valuable source of iron, selenium, B vitamins and vitamin D, all of which would be expected to support normal health.
However, the team found that the bottom sections of society are the ones most affected by this since they have a “sub-optimal fruit and vegetable intake”, increasing the ageing process, while still making the cut for sustaining human life in the short term.
Professor Paul Shiels of the Institute of Cancer Sciences at University of Glasgow said: “Our observations indicate that elevated red meat consumption has adverse effects amongst deprived males, who already have a poor diet and eat less fruit and vegetables than recommended. We think in this group the effects of high serum phosphate intake may be exacerbated. Indeed, it’s notable that these effects are not apparent among less deprived males, or in females, especially in the context of a more balanced diet.”
However, Dr Carrie Ruxton from the Meat Advisory Panel, had this to say in defence of red meats – “Looking at the authors’ theory that a higher meat intake in lower socio-economic groups contributed to faster ageing, national diet data actually showed lower or similar intakes of red meat in less well-off groups of people. For women the differences were 53-57g daily in the lowest two groups and 56-59g in the highest two groups. All this study can say is that higher blood phosphate levels are linked with faster cell ageing, and that red meat and blood phosphate are statistically correlated.”
There is still a lot of research to be covered about the topic and while speculation is high on the amount of meat a person is allowed to eat a day, the important thing to keep in mind is that it has to be supplemented with fruits and vegetables to be part of a balanced diet.