Can eating too much meat lead to a heart attack? Learn about the connection between processed meat and the risk for heart disease.
If you like to include pepperoni, prosciutto, sausage, and other processed meats in your meals, it’s time to rethink your decisions. While eating these meats may be delicious, a recent study shows that it’s better to avoid these meats for your health. The following is an overview of this study and how eating too much processed meat can negatively impact your heart health.
Appearing in a 2021 issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, consuming just a small amount of processed meat per week can increase your heart disease risk. The study analyzed the diets of more than 134,000 participants from 21 countries over the course of 10 years. In their research, experts specifically analyzed the participants’ cardiovascular health and their meat intake.
According to their results, participants who ate as little as five ounces of processed meats (about two sausages) per week increased their heart disease risk by 46 percent. Furthermore, consuming more processed meat (including anything salted or cured) also increases the risk of death in general by 51 percent.
Lastly, the researchers found that unprocessed meats like poultry, beef and pork had a neutral impact on the participants’ health. However, this doesn’t mean you can eat these in excess; it simply means that they didn’t cause the same drastic health effects as processed meat.
Cutting Out the Meat
According to the study’s authors, processed meat can put a strain on the heart due to its higher salt and preservative content. Preservatives and salt are added to these meats to increase their shelf life. However, consuming too much sodium over time can lead to high blood pressure, weight gain, heart disease, and more.
Fortunately, you can gradually switch to a plant-based diet if you want to improve your heart health. While this may be hard for meat lovers, it’s important to note that you don’t have to do it all at once. Start out by eating unprocessed meats and meats over pepperoni, sausage, and other processed meats. If you have any concerns about your diet and health, talk to your doctor so they can help you determine what’s best for you.
Maintaining a Healthy Heart
Diet plays a big role when it comes to maintaining a healthy heart. In fact, experts have even designed an eating plan (the DASH Diet) to specifically help reduce blood pressure. Other healthy diets like the Mediterranean diet are great for lowering cholesterol and maintaining a healthy heart.
In addition to your diet, you can give your heart health an extra boost by taking supplements like L-arginine Plus. Its ingredients effectively promote circulation, blood pressure, cholesterol, and more. Give your heart the support it needs by eating healthily, limiting processed meats, and taking L-arginine Plus.