Daily Red Meat Raises Risk for Diabetes

From Scientific American:

Red-meat-diabtetes_1 Sugary soda and other sweet treats are likely not the only foods to blame for the surge in diabetes across the U.S. New research out of Harvard University supports the theory that regular red meat consumption increases the risk of getting type 2 diabetes. An average of just one 85-gram (three-ounce) serving of unprocessed red meat—such as a medium hamburger or a small pork chop—per day increased by 12 percent the chances a person would get type 2 diabetes over the course of a decade or two. And if the meat was processed—such as a hot dog or two slices of bacon—the risk increased to 32 percent, even though serving sizes were smaller.

The new study, published online August 10 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, is not the first to find the link between red meat and diabetes risk. But it is the largest and one of the first to look separately at unprocessed and processed meats. “On a gram-per-gram basis, unprocessed red meat is still better,” says Frank Hu, a professor of nutrition and epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health and co-author of the new paper. “But unprocessed red meat is still associated with a significantly increased risk.” More than 8.5 percent of U.S. adults have been diagnosed with diabetes, and in some counties in the so-called “diabetes belt” in the South, the numbers exceed 11.2 percent. The rates are expected to keep climbing in the coming years. Hu suggests that based on the analysis there is indeed a “disease burden that can be attributed to consumption of either processed or unprocessed red meat.”

More here.