We know, we know. Every time you turn around, health researchers point to a facet of your diet that you should cut out or add in for improved health. With so many differing results, it sometimes seems appropriate to take advice with a (reasonably portioned) grain of salt.
But new research based on the Heath Professionals Follow-Up Study — a 22-year long study of 51,529 primarily Caucasian male heath professionals aged 40 to 75 that is updated every two years — offers the latest proof that simple changes in your diet can greatly reduce heart disease.
Give up that daily Coke
Put down that cola. Sugar-sweetened beverages up the chance of heart disease in men.
A 12-ounce sugar-sweetened beverage each day increases a man's risk of heart diseaseby 20 percent.
Researchers "found that the increase persisted even after controlling for other risk factors, including smoking, physical inactivity, alcohol use and a family history of heart disease."
However, the study found no apparent problem with having a sugary soda every now and then. "Less frequent consumption — twice weekly and twice monthly — didn't increase risk," the report states.
Or switch to artificially sweetened beverages. Researchers found no apparent link between increased risk of heart disease and consumption of beverages with artificial sweetner.
Another reason to enjoy Meatless Mondays
Red meat, long blamed for increased risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer, has now been proven to almost assuredly cause premature death.
The Los Angeles Times is reporting on a study published by the Archives of Internal Medicine that followed the eating habits and heath of more than 110,000 adults — "37,698 men from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study. . . and 83,644 women from the Nurses' Health Study. . . who were free of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and cancer at baseline."
Adding just one 3-ounce serving of unprocessed red meat — a piece of steak no bigger than a deck of cards — to one's daily diet increases your chance of dying by 13 percent.
Researchers here found that "adding just one 3-ounce serving of unprocessed red meat — picture a piece of steak no bigger than a deck of cards — to one's daily diet was associated with a 13 percent greater chance of dying during the course of the study."
The study also noted a "significantly elevated risk of total, CVD, and cancer mortality. . . with a relatively greater risk for processed red meat," like hot dogs, bacon and sausages.
Conversely, those participants who substituted fish, poultry, nuts, legumes, low-fat dairy products and whole grains saw a significantly lower risk of mortality — with nuts, a staggering 19 percent.
Tell us: Will these results affect your eating habits?