We are all unique individuals. Chances are, you’ve heard of that one Uncle that defied every single study out there by smoking like a chimney, eating all the meats and fats available, avoiding exercise, and he’s still approaching 95 while moving around daily like a Spring Chicken.
I get it. But despite Uncle Cletus’ miraculous health, the studies out there still show that the majority of us have cause for concern. Why these studies don’t ever include Uncle Cletus, I’m still unsure. I’ll get back to you on that one…
For the rest of us, it’s important to look at the studies and statistics to see how things like beef may be affecting our bodies.
#1 Red Meat Can Give You a Heart Attack
Cardiovascular Disease is the #1 killer in North America, and claims more lives than all forms of Cancer combined. Every 30 seconds, someone drops down dead from a heart attack. The main cause? Animal fats.
Time and again scientists have demonstrated a connection between eating large amounts of red meat and an individual’s risk for heart disease. Now, a recent study suggests this link between red meat and disease does not JUST derive from the saturated fats and cholesterol, but also the fact that your gut microbes break down meat in such a way that it produces trimethylamine-N-oxide. This has been associated with the fatty build-up in arteries, which in turn may cause a heart attack.
Dietary recommendations for cardiac rehab (post-heart attack patients) always recommend elimination or drastic reduction of red meats.
#2 You Risk Colon Cancer
Quite a few studies have provided evidence of red meat potentially causing colon cancer, and a Harvard study which involved 148,610 participants between the ages of 50 and 74 showed that a high consumption of red and processed meats substantially increased the risk of colorectal cancer.
Harvard said it, so it must be true.
#3 Alzheimer’s Disease, Anyone?
Scientists believe that the cause of Alzheimer’s disease is actually the proteins called Tau and beta-amyloid accumulating in the brain. These disrupt and/or kill important nerve cells.
A new study from UCLA, though, suggests that iron accumulation is another possible contributing factor. Researchers found that iron had begun to accumulate in the brains of 31 Alzheimer’s patients. Specifically, they discovered this build-up in a part of the brain which is generally damaged in the early stages of the disease. Red meat is full of iron, and a high-red meat diet can lead to iron build-up.
#4 Bring On The Type 2 Diabetes
Red meat consumption is associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. Three extra servings of red meat every week increases the risk of developing diabetes by 48 percent!!! So if you’re cooking up that steak and stopping for a burger at the drive thru a couple times, you’ve pretty much got a 50/50 chance of developing Diabetes.
And here you thought it was the cookies that would do you in…
#5 Meat Today Isn’t What It Used To Be
Unlike the burgers that Grandma used to cook up, the meat you eat today has more than likely been pumped full of hormones, synthetic chemicals, and antibiotics. These have all been linked to some of the following problems in humans: birth defects, miscarriages, cancer, and a myriad of other issues.
#6 The Resources Needed to Raise Beef Are Causing Drastic Environmental Consequences
For just one quarter pounder, it takes the following to bring it to your plate:
- 6.7 pounds of grain and forage
- 52.8 gallons of water
- 1,036 BTus Fossil Fuels
And this doesn’t include the waste and methane emissions…
If you want to understand more about how the beef and dairy industry is affecting the environment, be sure to watch Cowspiracy.
#7 Cows Are Nice
Chances are you used to color pretty pictures of cows or visited a local farm and were able to pet a living cow. You were probably in childhood awe and wonder. Has a cow ever done anything mean to you?
I thought not. 😉