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Monday, 15 December 2014

Red Meat Increases Your Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

Recent research findings have revealed how bacteria that inhabit your guts turn a nutrient found in red meat into metabolites. These are any substances that are involved in metabolism (either as a product of metabolism or as necessary for metabolism). What do metabolites do to your body? They are substances that are involved in the organic processes in cells and living organisms that are responsible for life; these substances are very likely to cause your system to develop a high risk for heart disease.

In a research led by Dr. Stanley Hazen, of Lerner Research Institute and the Miller Family Heart and Vascular Institute at Cleveland Clinic in the USA, scientists have shown that by this behaviour as exhibited in the afore mentioned studies, red meat can promote the development of atherosclerosis which is the hardening of the arteries. In other words the bacteria which are naturally present in the gut - which is actually your bowel, or the part of the alimentary canal which stretches from, and between the stomach and the anus, convert L-carnitine which is a nutrient loaded in red meat, into a compound called trimethylamine. This compound in turn is changed to a metabolite called trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO).

TMAO as a metabolite is what induces the development of atherosclerosis – a coronary artery disease. It is a stage of arteriosclerosis involving fatty deposits (atheromas) inside the arterial walls, thus narrowing the arteries. Even though the culprit in this issue happens to be the chemical compound L-carnitine, it is often widely known also that red meat has loaded in it dangerous saturated fat and harmful cholesterol. This is abundantly present is many forms of red meat such as steak, hamburger, lamb, etc. This increases your risk of heart disease. And so it will be advisable to go it easy on red meat in order to keep your heart.

However, according to a respected cardiologist and epidemiologist - Dr. Mozaffarian, the highest risks are in the consumption of certain types of red meat – processed meat. Examples of these are in the class of sausages, harm, bacon, salami. 

This discovery has created a new awareness thereby boosting the already well known importance of useful natural bacteria that are found also in your system – that is to say probiotics. Probiotics are a group of beneficial bacteria found in the intestinal tract of healthy mammals; they are often considered to be plants, or as may be described by the term flora. Probiotics are also available today in the form of food supplements that you can easily purchase from your nearest health nutritionist shops for the purpose of improving your nutrient absorption, attaining immune system harmony as well as digestive system correction and perfection.

With the discoveries of the behaviours of red meat, and the pathway to equally combating or blocking the inherent dangers posed by the consumption of red meat, you may still decide that you could continue to ‘have your steak and eat it’. But in all honesty, the real lesson is that believe it or not, your appetite or consumption of red meat such as beef must necessarily be stepped down considerably for you to maintain a sound health. When you do this, you have drastically by that conscious effort reduced your risk of both cardiovascular disease and cancer(s) for that matter.

Also, I cannot over emphasise here the importance of prevention by any other means and treatment available. Fish oil has proved however to be an efficacious remedy for the treatment and prevention of arterial wall clogging. Superior fish oil such as super Arctic Sea - a blend of essential (deep sea) fish oil and olive oil and other vital ingredients, have been found capable of melting or clearing away plaques that have over time built along the walls of the arteries and blood vessels. It is this blockage as it were, that causes the heart to come under tension which as a result builds into what is called (high) blood pressure. It is the extreme of this pressure or the uncontrolled activities of the strained heart due to the attendant stress that eventually leads to heart disease or cardiovascular problems.

A word of caution again for everyone: love your heart, beware of red meat; to prevent cancer, discipline your appetite for red meat, especially processed red meat. Even just recently the World Health Oganisation (WHO) published a research that put bacon, ham and sausages in the same category of cancer risk as tobacco, asbestos, arsenic and alcohol. Prevention as we know, is always better than cure.

By Morgan Nwanguma

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