Red & Processed Meats

Recommendation: Choose Healthier Proteins

Consumption of both red meat (beef, pork, mutton, and lamb) and processed meats (for instance: ham, bacon, sausage, and deli meats) is associated with increased risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes.1 Red meat contains significant amounts of saturated fat, cholesterol, and heme iron, which are associated with insulin resistance and diabetes risk. Processed red meats are especially unhealthy, as they contain preservatives and high levels of sodium.2 Instead of red meats or processed meats, try to eat more healthy proteins such as nuts, beans, chicken, fish, seafood, and tofu.
Take a look at the Harvard Healthy Eating Plate for more information on how to create healthy, balanced meals.
2 Qi L, Cornelis MC, Zhang C, van Dam RM, Hu FB. Genetic predisposition, Western dietary pattern, and the risk of type 2 diabetes in men. Am J Clin Nutr. 2009;89(5):1453-1458.