Beef is linked with a host of detrimental effects on the health. Here are seven reasons why one should avoid beef,
- Higher risk of Alzheimer’s disease: Alzheimer’s disease is an age related disease which is associated with dementia and loss of memory. Reports suggest that eating red meat results in accumulation of beta-amyloid in the brain.
- Higher risk of cardiovascular disease: Recent research study indicates that breakdown of carnitine (a compound found in meat) produces trimethylamine-N-oxide. Trimethylamine leads to fatty build up in the arteries and is a leading contributor to development of atherosclerosis. In addition, red meat is loaded with cholesterol and saturated fats, which lead to higher risk of atherosclerosis.
- Higher risk of colon cancer: In a large scale study conducted in the US, involving over 150,000 participants, red meat consumption was linked with higher risk of colon and rectal cancer.
- Higher risk of Diabetes: Red meat is linked with higher risk of developing type II diabetes i.e. insulin sensitive diabetes. As per estimates, three servings of red meat a week, increases risk of diabetes by almost 50 percent.
- Mad Cow disease: Mad cow disease is a disease affecting cattle which was first detected in mid 1980s. Researchers suggest that consuming cattle affected by this disease, can lead to a medical condition called Creutzfeldt- Jakob disease. This condition is highly fatal, with estimated survival rate of 5%, after fifteen months of diagnosis. While there are currently on 227 cases reported worldwide, the condition is bound to increase in future.
- Hormones and Drugs: There is increasing usage of antibiotics and hormones to boost the growth of cattle and protect them from diseases. This is meant to boost up profits for cattle farmers, but this increases the concentration of chemical toxins in meat. On consumption of meat, these chemicals enter our body. These chemicals not only alter the metabolic functions in the body, but can lead to higher toxicity. While most of the drugs and hormones are tested and approved by FDA, their combined effect on human body remains unclear. This explains the increased risk of cancers, diabetes and cardiac disorders among humans consuming red meat.
- Trichinosis: This is a parasitic infection which is caused on consumption of uncooked or undercooked pork. This parasite enters the human body and forms a cyst. The cyst can be formed in any part of the body. While in most cases, the cyst may be harmless, a cyst in the brain, lungs, liver, kidney or heart can be life threatening. As per estimates, there are approximately 10 cases reported in the United States annually, though the estimates are higher in developing countries like Thailand.