Sins of the flesh: If meat isn't so good for you, how do you get healthy protein? from the Harvard Men's Health Watch

New research from the Harvard School of Public Health indicates that daily helpings of red meat—especially processed red meats like cold cuts and hot dogs—can shorten your life. If that's the case, what are other foods you should choose to get the protein you need? The June 2012 Harvard Men's Health Watch has some answers.

By replacing part of your meat intake with fish, poultry, nuts, beans, and other healthy sources of protein, you can substantially reduce your chance of dying prematurely.

The researchers looked for statistical links between meat consumption and cause of death. The populations scrutinized included about 84,000 women in the Nurses' Health Study and 38,000 men in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study. Those who ate the most red meat tended to die younger from cardiovascular disease and cancer, even after the researchers compensated for the effects of smoking, being overweight, and other unhealthy lifestyle influences. For each additional 3-ounce serving of red meat, people had a 13% increased risk of premature death.

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