Eating red meat may increase the risk of type 2 diabetes by up to 62 percent, according to a meta-analysis conducted by scientists at Harvard University. As part of it, academics studied data on the health condition of over 216,000 people. Experts emphasize that red meat is not only pork and beef.
Previous studies have already indicated a relationship between the consumption of beef or pork and the risk of type 2 diabetes. The latest study by scientists from Harvard University sheds new, clearer light on this correlation. According to his results, people who eat large amounts of red meat may be up to 62 percent more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who eat plant-based meat substitutes.
– The results of our study highlight the importance of dietary guidelines, according to which the consumption of red meat should be limited – said Xiao Gu, lead author of the study published on Thursday in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, quoted in “The Guardian”.
Red meat consumption and the risk of type 2 diabetes
For the meta-analysis, researchers examined data on 216,695 people from three different studies. Participants were asked to regularly complete questionnaires describing their health every 2-4 years, for a total period of up to 36 years. During this time, 22,000 respondents developed diabetes.
The analysis of the questionnaires allowed us to estimate the extent to which the consumption of red meat increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. As it turned out, people consuming the largest amounts of red meat were up to 62 percent more exposed to it than people who consumed this type of meat the least often.
According to researchers, consuming each additional daily dose of unprocessed red meat increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 24 percent. In the case of processed meat, it is 46 percent. According to estimates by Harvard scientists, replacing one daily dose of red meat with plant sources of protein, such as nuts and legumes, reduces the risk of diabetes by 30 percent. In turn, replacing it with dairy products – by 22 percent.
As the authors of the study point out, eating red meat increases the risk of developing diabetes, even if it is not consumed every day. An intake of approximately twice a week is sufficient for this purpose. – Taking into account our findings and the results of previous work by other scientists, a reasonable limit for people who want to optimize their health and well-being would be to eat one portion of red meat per week – commented Professor Walter Willett, one of the study’s authors, in The Guardian.
The term “red meat” covers both beef and pork, lamb, mutton, horse meat, as well as duck and goose meat – informs the National Center for Nutrition Education (NCEŻ).
Diabetes incidence in the world and in Poland
As published in September report by Aging Analytics Agency, which analyzes data in healthcare, 537 million people suffer from diabetes globally. About 40 percent of them remain undiagnosed. In Poland, diabetes affects approximately three million people, one third of whom are unaware of the disease, according to government data. What makes the undiagnosed rate so high?
Symptoms of diabetes are not always obvious. – People attribute symptoms to other things (…). For example, they think that they get up at night to go to the toilet because they are just getting a little older. These symptoms are difficult to notice given a busy lifestyle, which means that some people can live with this condition for up to 10 years before they are diagnosed – says Esther Walde, senior clinical advisor at Diabetes UK, describing less obvious symptoms in The Independent. .
The Guardian, ajcn.nutrition.org, ncez.pzh.gov.pl, TVN24.pl
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