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High Death Rates from Nine Diseases Linked to Meat

Cancer, type 2 diabetes, stroke, infections, Alzheimer's, and diseases of the kidneys, heart, respiratory tract, and liver all linked to red meat consumption.

A new cohort study published in the British Medical Journal, linked the consumption of both processed and unprocessed red meat to an increase in death rates from a total of nine different diseases. The study examined the dietary habits of more than 536,000 individuals between the ages of 50 and 71 and found that those who consumed the highest amount of meat over a 16-year period had a 26 percent higher rate of death from cancer, type 2 diabetes, stroke, infections, Alzheimer's, and diseases of the kidneys, respiratory tract, and liver. “This is the largest study, so far, to show increased mortality risks from different causes associated with consuming both processed and unprocessed red meat,” the study authors write, “and it underlines the importance of heme iron, nitrates, and nitrites in assessing the pathways related to health risks associated with red meat intake.” A separate cohort study conducted by the Mayo Clinic last year also found similar results and recommended that physicians advise ailing patients to replace animal products with plant-based foods.

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