Why is red meat protein less healthy than other protein sources?

“Not all proteins are equal in their health effects,” notes Linda E. Kelemen, RD, ScD and assistant professor of epidemiology at the Mayo Clinic. “Vegetable proteins may deliver minerals and antioxidants that the body benefits from or contain substances that affect our hormones in healthier ways.” By contrast, excessive intake of red meat is linked to increased risk of colorectal and lung cancer. Also, certain protein sources can make you feel fuller for longer. Fish is more filling than beef -- with half the calories and a tenth of the saturated fat. A Swedish study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that those who lunched on fish, instead of beef, consumed 10 percent fewer calories at dinner.
Jessica Crandall
Nutrition & Dietetics

Limiting the amount of red meat to 18 ounces a week, has been shown to reduce risk of cancer. Poultry, fish, and legumes are great sources of protein as well and are considered leaner options. Red meat includes beef, lamb, and pork which are usually higher in saturated fat depending on the cuts of meat, which can lead to higher levels of cholesterol that can plug up your heart. Leaner cuts of red meat include the loin, sirloin, and round which are lower in saturated fat.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.