​Attention Meat Eaters: Diets Rich in Animal Protein Associated With Greater Risk of Death by 30Seconds Health

Nutrition Family Health
8 months ago
​Attention Meat Eaters: Diets Rich in Animal Protein Associated With Greater Risk of Death

A diet rich in animal protein, and meat in particular, is not good for your health, a study from the University of Eastern Finland finds, providing further backing for earlier research evidence. Men who favored animal protein over plant-based protein in their diet had a greater risk of death in a 20-year follow-up than men whose diet was more balanced in terms of their sources of protein. The findings were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Men whose primary sources of protein were animal-based had a 23 percent higher risk of death during the follow-up than men who had the most balanced ratio of animal and plant-based protein in their diet. A high intake of meat in particular seemed to associate with adverse effects: men eating a diet rich in meat (i.e. more than 200 grams per day) had a 23 percent greater risk of death during the follow-up than men whose intake of meat was less than 100 grams per day. The men participating in the study mainly ate red meat. Most nutrition recommendations nowadays limit the intake of red and processed meats. In Finland, for example, the recommended maximum intake is 500 grams per week.

The study also found that a high overall intake of dietary protein was associated with a greater risk of death in men who had been diagnosed with type 2 diabetescardiovascular disease or cancer at the onset of the study. A similar association was not found in men without these diseases. The findings highlight the need to investigate the health effects of protein intake especially in people who have a pre-existing chronic medical condition. The mean age of the men participating in the study was 53 years at the onset, and diets clearly lacking in protein were not typical among the study population. 

“However, these findings should not be generalized to older people who are at a greater risk of malnutrition and whose intake of protein often remains below the recommended amount,” points out Heli Virtanen from the University of Eastern Finland.

Earlier studies have suggested that a high intake of animal protein, and especially the consumption of processed meats such as sausages and cold cuts, is associated with an increased risk of death. However, the big picture relating to the health effects of protein and different protein sources remains unclear.

The study is based on the Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study (KIHD) that analyzed the dietary habits of approximately 2,600 Finnish men aged between 42 and 60 at the onset of the study in 1984-1989. The researchers studied the mortality of this study population in an average follow-up of 20 years by analyzing registers provided by Statistics Finland. The analyses focused on the associations of dietary protein and protein sources with mortality during the follow-up, and other lifestyle factors and dietary habits were extensively controlled for, including the fact that those eating plenty of plant-based protein followed a healthier diet.

Take 30 seconds and join the 30Seconds community. Inspire ... and be inspired.

Related Products on Amazon We Think You May Like:

30Second Mobile, Inc. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

How to Go Vegan: 7 Easy Steps to a Kinder, Plant-based Lifestyle

Vegan Pregnancy: Mom-to-be's Complete Guide to a Healthy Plant-based Pregnancy

Going Vegan: Here Are 3 Tips for Your Plant-Based Diet Journey

Elisa All Schmitz 30Seconds
More and more data is showing that plant-based and Mediterranean diets are so much healthier than those skewing toward meat (especially red meat, it seems). Thank you for sharing this info!

join discussion

Please login to comment.

recommended tips

The Health Benefits of Cinnamon: Why You Need to Sprinkle This Spice on Everything

Drunkorexia: How This Dangerous Practice Is Associated With Eating Disorders

Reducing the Risk of Shoulder Joint Disorders: Unlike Wine, Shoulder Joints Don’t Get Better With Age

Hemp Seeds: A Great-Tasting Way to Get More Protein (Plus an Easy Recipe)!

Got 30 seconds? Sign up for 30Seconds.com and get the best of our tips each week!