Replacing Red Meat with Plant Proteins Lowers the Heart Disease's Risk

Jan 03, 2021 12:33 AM EST | By Josh Summers (

Replacing Red Meat with Plant Proteins Lowers the Heart Disease’s Risk
(Photo : Cindy Ord)
A view of steaks being prepared during Titans of BBQ presented by National Beef and Pat LaFrieda Meats hosted by Dario Cecchini, Pat LaFrieda and Michael Symon at Pier 97 on October 12, 2019 in New York City.

Heart Disease is a serious dilemma for people who have it, and their lifestyle and diet just like enjoying their favorite red meat dishes are greatly affected because of it. 

National Institutes of Health (NIH) reports that past research relates red meat to cardiovascular diseases and certain cancers. The Institute adds that the studies have also pointed to an elevated risk of mortality from red meat intake. 

This only means that red meat possesses a risk of developing heart disease which makes it inappropriate to be present in the diet of those people who have or who might have heart disease. 

A new study published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) suggests swapping red meat with plant-based proteins may lower the risk of heart disease. 

Methods and results of the study

Red meats are a good source of proteins which our body needs to perform better. However, Prevention notes that consuming red meat every day especially processed foods like sausages, hot dogs, and salami can heighten an individual's risk of heart disease, what more to those who already have them. 

Bicycling adds that the new study suggests replacing red meats with proteins from plants like nuts, soy, and beans may help in the daily lives of those with higher risks of heart disease. 

With author Laila Alshaar of the new study, BMJ demonstrates that the researchers base their findings on data from more than 43 thousand men and an average age of 53 from a health professionals follow-up study. 

Read also: New Study Uncovers Nutrient in Red Meat Linked With Heart Disease

Prevention adds that after taking other cardiovascular risk factors into account, the researchers were able to find out that there is an 11 percent higher risk of heart disease for every serving of unprocessed red meat consumed per day. 

Compared with red meat, Bicycling adds that eating a serving of plant protein a day shows a 14 percent diminished risk of heart disease. They also note that the risk was 18 percent lower for men aging over 65 years old. 

Researchers also mention in the BMJ that consuming whole grains and dairy products such as cheese, yogurt, and milk instead of red meat and eating eggs instead of processed meat shows a significant relationship to a lower heart disease risk. 

Bicycling surprisingly notes that replacing red meat with fish does not show any significant decrease in the risk of heart disease. 

Therefore, the researchers conclude in the British Medical Journal that substituting high-quality plant foods like legumes, soy, and nuts for red meat might reduce the risk of heart disease, specifically coronary heart disease (CHD). 

Plant-based proteins benefits

According to Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, getting proteins from plants if possible is better. However, they emphasized that some plants contain a smaller number of proteins that is why mixing them is essential so that there are no components of proteins missing in the body. 

Medical News Today mentions that consuming more plant protein may also improve overall health. 

When protein is taken into account, we may say that red meat is also important even if it may cause complications like heart disease. Still, moderation should always be instilled in the minds and hearts of people to have better health. Aligning to better options like plant-based proteins may help the body and supply the protein it still needs.  

Related article: Key ingredient in tomatoes can help fight heart disease

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