Why you should reduce your consumption of red meat?
I come from a family with a history of cancer, heart problems and Parkinson disease. My mom passed away when she was 40 years old from breast cancer and few years ago my dad died of heart disease and Parkinson. Sure seeing my parents suffer and struggle was a painful experience but we all know that if something doesn’t kill you it makes you stronger. When my mom was going through chemotherapy doctors recommended that she should include red meat regularly in her diet. I used to make her meat barbeque every morning and now I regret that if I could return time I would have made her a fresh live green smoothie instead of red meat. But I guess not even with all the energy in the universe you can go back in time and make a difference.
Based on studies and research in the past few decades, scientists and researchers have discovered that people who regularly consume red meat (steak, pork, burgers) have higher risk of heart disease, cancer, and premature death. Study on more than half a million elderly and middle age Americans has shown that people who consume hamburgers, pork or steak are 30% more likely to die from heart disease or cancer within 10 years. Red meat is high in saturated fat, iron and bad cholesterol that promote plague buildup in the arteries, and cause heart disease. It also contributes to causing breast cancer as well as colorectal cancer. Cooked red meat produces cancerous compounds and free radicals in the blood that result in high blood pressure and dangerous rising of cholesterol level. Here are the health risks of consuming other meats:
- Processed meats like sausages and hot dogs have nitrosamines that are linked to cancer.
- Pork might be known as white meat but consuming pork on regular basis increases the chances of cancer.
- Farmed fish has high mercury level and PBCs that cause hormone imbalances. Except wild Sockeye salmon (with 0.09 mercury) other fish and seafood like tuna have high contamination of mercury. The harm of red meat is much greater than its benefits. However organic white meat and wild fish are related to lower chances of mortality. Fish has omega 3 fatty acids (which is good for you) and poultry meat have unsaturated fat that help to reduce the level of bad cholesterol and chances of heart disease.
Studies show that men who consumed red meat on a regular basis were 31% more likely to die prematurely, 27% more likely to die from heart disease and 22% more likely to die of cancer. Also women who consumed red meat were 36% more likely to die prematurely, 50% more likely to die of heart disease and 20% more likely to die of cancer. The risk of death goes even higher in both men and women who consume processed meat like hamburgers, sausages and hot dogs on regular basis. Research studies strongly suggest that people shouldn’t just reduce consumption of red meat but they should completely eliminate it from their diet.
With a well balanced diet of organic raw fruits and vegetables, grains, wild salmon, organic free-range poultry, brown rice and wheat bread you are likely to live a much better quality of life and enjoy a healthier life style. Even if you decided to completely eliminate all kinds of meat, a well-balanced vegan diet has all the nutrients your body needs. One of the other problems associated with red meat consumption is global warming. Major reduction in red meat consumption could help the environment by reducing pollution, greenhouse gasses and global warming. It’s no wonder that instinctive animals in the wild avoid eating rotten meat of other dead animals. They can sense the smell of rotting meat that is contaminated with dangerous carcinogens. However on the other hand humans cook and eat dead or sick animals delivered to the local grocery stores. In fact consuming meat more than twice a week in the last few decades has resulted in our reduced sense of smell that used to protect humans in the past from contaminated pathogens.
Somehow in the last 50 years we decided to change our diet drastically comparing to our diet in last 10,000 years. Since man started agricultural farming, we started making radical changes in our diet. We used to eat wide variety of fruits and vegetables but we narrowed our diet to grains and wheat which made us very sick at the beginning. And even since then we have been narrowing our diet even more to eating only a fewer food varieties and living close to animals we raised so we got all kinds of diseases from them. It’s been taking us thousands of years to get back to the same physical size and shape as we were some ten thousand years ago.
But somehow in the last three decades we stared changing things ever more dramatically by genetically modifying foods we knew little about as well as using hormones and antibiotics in live stock and feeding genetically modified corn, soy bean and dead animals to our cows and chickens. We narrowed our diet down from eating wide variety of raw fresh fruits, herbs and vegetables to foods that have sugar, salt, GMOs, MSG, corn syrup, complex carbohydrates, herbicides, pesticides, chemicals, aspartame, formaldehyde, heavy metals and all kinds of other carcinogens. We learnt the technology to invent food that never dies. Somehow we started killing all the remaining nutrients in our food by overheating, frying, cooking, freezing, microwaving and caning but even that wasn’t enough.
We took the whole thing into a new level by feeding our livestock with genetically modified corn and soy and injecting our cows, turkeys, pigs and chickens with all kinds of hormones and antibiotics so they could fatten up a lot faster and cheaper. We turned the whole agricultural industry into agribusiness and made corporate profit a priority; even more important than the health of our children and nation. The reality is that our diet is making us sick and even today we cannot afford the health care system we have. Statistics show that if obesity rate goes up at the current rate, by 2030 between 40% to 60% of Americans are going to be obese. Currently we are spending 150 billion dollars on health consequences of obesity and by 2018 that number will double. We need to make healthy nutritional diet a national priority and available in our schools & communities otherwise we will pay a serious price both as individuals and as a nation.