A new study published this week confirms what scientists have been saying for years: eating red meat—particularly processed meat—is associated with an increased risk of premature death. Surveying the diets and health of more than 121,000 adults over a 28-year period, researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health found that each daily serving of red meat increased participants’ risk of premature death by 13 percent, as compared to subjects who ate healthier proteins, such as grains and nuts. Even more staggering, individuals who consumed an extra serving of processed red meat, such as bacon or hot dogs, were 20 percent more likely to face premature death. Researchers point to high levels of saturated fat and iron, the presence of toxic preservatives, and carcinogens released during the cooking process as possible causes.
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