Eating meat has been associated with lower levels of inflammation, according to a study that has been hailed as a breakthrough.
Key points:The study looked at 10,000 people who had a history of diabetes, heart disease or other conditions linked to meat consumptionA study of about 10,0000 people found meat consumption can lower the risk of obesity, diabetes and heart diseaseA study found meat bakes up the body’s own inflammatory responseIn a study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, researchers looked at people who were diagnosed with diabetes, had high blood pressure, high cholesterol and high triglycerides.
They also had high body mass index (BMI), a measure of how fat the person is.
People with a history and current cardiovascular disease were more likely to eat meat and a higher number of processed meats and sugary drinks.
But the researchers found that the consumption of meat was not linked to any of these conditions.
“The finding of a protective effect of meat on inflammation is important because inflammation is thought to be a risk factor for the development of metabolic syndrome,” said Dr Rama Prasad, who led the study.
“Meat is an essential component of a diet that is high in protein, fibre and omega-3 fatty acids and this is likely to help to reduce inflammation and improve glucose control.”
The study also found that those who ate a lot of meat were more than twice as likely to have diabetes, as well as being more likely than those who consumed less.
“While the overall findings of this study are promising, the evidence is more complex and may need further investigation,” Dr Prasac said.
“However, our results suggest that eating meat may be beneficial for metabolic health and that the beneficial effects of meat consumption are not simply a result of increased intake of meat.”
As the prevalence of diabetes and cardiovascular disease continues to rise, the potential benefits of meat are important to consider.