Weight Loss with HEALTHeME

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Friday, August 12, 2011

Red Meat Consumption May Equal Diabetes

Red meat is a staple of the American diet. Many people feel burgers and “dogs” are a necessity at ballgames. And, in restaurants, there is a “bigger-is-better” mentality when it comes to steak. But, new research may have you thinking twice before you order your next filet.

A recent study found that eating processed meat or red meat increases your risk for type 2 diabetes. Researchers analyzed the diets of more than 200,000 people and did a larger analysis of other published studies. They found eating 4 ounces of red meat per day increased the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 20%. Consuming just 2 oz. of processed meats, like bologna, salami, bacon, and sausage, increased the risk of type 2 diabetes by 50%! A 4 oz. serving is about the size of a deck of cards; 2 slices of lunchmeat is a 2 oz. serving of meat.

Nuts and low-fat dairy products are great sources of protein, are heart-healthy, and proven ways to trim your waistline. This study adds another reason to include these foods in your diet: Researchers found substituting nuts, whole grains, or low-fat dairy for one serving of meat every day could decrease your risk of diabetes by 16-35%.

Here are a few other high protein foods you can use instead of red or processed meats:
  • Egg whites
  • Fish, especially heart-healthy salmon
  • Legumes (lentils, black beans, kidney beans, and chick-peas)
  • Soybeans (edamame, tofu, and soy burgers)
  • Low-fat dairy products, especially Greek yogurt which has twice the protein of regular yogurt
Skip the bacon and make Greek yogurt your breakfast side-of-choice. At your next cookout, try throwing some soy-burgers on the grill. Decrease your risk of type 2 diabetes by making some easy substitutes and you’ll be one step closer to a healthier you.