Looks like yellow journalism is alive and well…especially in recent medical press. Because get a load of this headline: “Mortality May Increase as Red Meat Consumption Rises.”
This study was published in the BMJ—a very reputable medical journal. So you better believe that people are going to buy its lurid tale that red meat is somehow lethal. (If they haven’t already been brainwashed, that is.)
This ridiculous “plant-based” propaganda is par for the course these days—so I’m not the least bit surprised to see more questionable research making the rounds. But I do feel obligated to weigh in when a fresh attack makes headlines.
So let’s take a look at what this new study has to say. And we’ll go from there.
More meat, more problems?
Before we dive in, let me make one thing clear: This was an observational study. Which means that, even according to the authors themselves, it doesn’t prove that red meat causes higher death risk.
It only shows an association. The actual reason behind the link could come down to any number of things. But I’ll circle back to that in a moment.
For now, I’ll just say that the study’s design should be your first indication that its conclusion isn’t as straightforward as it seems. (Though red meat does make for a convenient target—and mainstream “experts” take full advantage of this, like the bullies they are.)
This research looked at data from the Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study, collected between 1986 and 2010. None of the participants had heart disease or cancer when the study started.
Over the course of eight years, results showed that an increase in total red meat consumption of up to 3.5 servings per day was linked with an increase in mortality, among both men and women, by roughly ten percent.
This is hardly a gigantic increase, for one thing—and it doesn’t even hold clinical significance. Meaning the findings lack a practical, palpable effect.
In fact, here’s the part that really muddies the waters: Decreases in total meat consumption, by the same amount, had no influence on death risk whatsoever. Not exactly what you’d expect if red meat was doing the dirty work all by itself, now is it?
Double check the quality of your red meat, first
This isn’t the first time a study has scapegoated red meat. In the past, it’s been tied to everything from heart disease to diabetes to cancer.
Processed red meat (like hot dogs or bacon) has an even longer rap sheet. (And are you really surprised? Eating a lot of any processed “food” is just about the surest path to chronic disease there is.)
Researchers cite saturated fat, high sodium, preservatives, and potential carcinogens as the reasons behind such connections. But that explanation ignores established facts—and fails to answer at least one key question.
For starters, we already know that saturated fat isn’t the villain it’s been made out to be. And the sodium myth doesn’t hold up, either. As for preservatives and carcinogens, tell me this… exactly what kind of red meat were these people eating?
Because unprocessed, organic, free-range, grass-fed and -finished meat doesn’t contain either of these toxins. While conventionally raised, hormone-injected, corn fed, factory farmed meats do.
I’d call that a pretty critical distinction, wouldn’t you?
This is exactly why I’m so adamant about minding the quality of the meat you eat. Because the truth is simple: Red meat can be one of the healthiest foods on your plate… if it’s been raised the way it’s supposed to be raised.
Just once, wouldn’t it be nice if these “observational” studies actually observed something fully before they went about misinforming the general public?
In the meantime, if you want the real scoop on red meat, turn to my A-List Diet book.
It’s a must-read for anyone hungry for the truth behind these outdated myths. So if you haven’t ordered your copy yet, consider picking one up today.
“Mortality May Increase as Red Meat Consumption Rises.” Medscape Medical News, 06/12/2019. (medscape.com/viewarticle/914330)