It should be no surprise that extreme eating habits can be detrimental to one`s health. Supporting prior evidence of the harm of overdoing red and processed meats, a recent National Cancer Institute study of more than a half million older Americans found that a diet high in these foods causes a modest but statistically significant increase in the risk of death from heart disease and cancer.
A well-balanced diet is essential to proper development, growth, and the maintenance of health, and studies indicate that balancing your diet helps decrease the risk of chronic disease. In 2002 the Institute of Medicine released "Dietary Reference Intakes for Energy, Carbohydrate, Fiber, Fat, Fatty Acids, Cholesterol, Protein, and Amino Acids", a report that recommends science-based amounts of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates that people need to maintain health. It states that adults should get 10 percent to 35 percent of their calories from protein each day. The report also recommended that people keep their intake of saturated fat , trans fat, and cholesterol as low as possible because they raise people`s risk for coronary heart disease. Red meat contains significant amounts of both saturated fat and cholesterol.
Because proteins, fats, and carbohydrates can substitute for one another as calorie sources, the report did not recommend a specific amount of meat or other protein sources that people should eat daily. The National Institutes of Health estimate that the average adult should consume approximately four ounces of meat per day and most Americans eat more than this.
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