The results came from the Nurses’ Health Study, which followed 84,000 women, aged 30 to 55 years for 26 years. Their results were published online August 16, 2010 in Circulation.
During the 26 years of follow-up, the consumption of red meat and high-fat dairy were significantly associated with an increased risk of coronary heart disease, whereas higher intakes of poultry, fish, and nuts were significantly associated with lower risk.
For example, replacing one serving per day of red meat with one serving per day of nuts reduced the risk of coronary disease by 30%. Similar benefits were also seen in eating more fish, poultry and low-fat dairy. The corresponding coronary disease risk reductions were 24%, 19% and 13% respectively.
The authors believed that the increase in systolic blood pressure due to iron, the high sodium content of processed meats, and the compounds created by cooking red meat, such as heterocyclic amines and advanced glycaion end products might all contribute to the increase cardiovascular risk. In some previous studies, iron has been positively associated with MI and fatal coronary disease.
Source: Circulation 2010; DOI:10.116/circulationaha.109.915165.
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