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Processed Meats, Foods Greatly Increase Diabetes Risk

No big surprise here about a study that found processed foods and meats are so bad for you they increase your risk of diabetes. What's really interesting, however, is just how bad those numbers really are, especially if you eat a "Western" diet that includes candy, French fries, refined grains and red and processed meats.

Patients were nearly 50 percent more likely to develop diabetes over a 14-year period than people who ate minimal amounts of Western-type foods.

In fact, researchers found as patients ate more red and processed meats their risk of diabetes increased. For instance, each additional daily serving of red meat increased a person's risk of diabetes by 26 percent. Adding a serving of processed meat upped one's chances of diabetes by nearly 40 percent.

Another danger: Many processed and red meats and other high fat foods are cooked at such high temperatures, they form substances that appear to help trigger the development of diabetes.

For your good health, I agree staying away from most commercial brands of meat is a good idea, because meat you'll buy in most grocery stores largely comes from grain-fed cattle full of hormones and antibiotics. To get nutritional benefits you need -- red meat is an excellent source of iron -- seek out healthy meat that is grass-fed and organic, meaning it is free from chemicals and hormones.

Yahoo News November 8, 2004

Archives of Internal Medicine Vol. 164 No. 20, November 8, 2004

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