As we recently reported, swapping red or processed meats for other foods can pay dividends for your health. Going “meatless” is a growing trend. In fact, Meatless Monday is a nonprofit initiative of The Monday Campaigns, in association with the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University.
There are a number of reasons why going meatless (even just one day a week) can benefit your health. Here are our top five reasons to reduce your consumption of meat and eat more produce, whole grains and low-fat dairy.
Reduce cancer risk.
Research continues to show that consuming more vegetables and fruit each day significantly reduces your risk of cancer. People who consume one serving of red meat or processed meat each day have a 51 percent increased risk of colon or rectal cancer.
Decrease risk of diabetes.
Harvard researchers found that replacing one serving of red meat with nuts reduced risk of Type 2 diabetes by 21 percent.
Help prevent heart disease.
Red and processed meats are typically high in saturated fat, which leads to heart disease. By swapping meat for other foods, you can decrease your risk of heart disease by 19 percent.
A study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that people who ate red meat typically consumed more overall calories and had higher body mass indexes than those who did not.
Protect the planet by reducing your carbon footprint.
According to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, meat production accounts for one-fifth of man-made greenhouse gas emissions.
Are you considering going meatless once a week? Let us know in the comments below.
Poll recap: What is your biggest back-to-school health concern for your child?
This week, we asked viewers about their biggest back-to-school health concerns.
- 41 percent said they were concerned about their child getting enough exercise throughout the school day.
- 27 percent responded that they were concerned about the spread of serious illness, like meningitis.
- 18 percent said they were concerned about their child receiving proper nutrition from school cafeteria lunches.
- 14 percent answered that they were worried about their child getting food poisoning from packed lunches that are not kept cold enough.