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New study connects red meat and processed meat to increased diabetes risk

Category: Diabetes

Red meat and processed meat may significantly increase an individual's chances of developing type 2 diabetes, but dietary changes may minimize the risk, according to a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health found that individuals who ate one daily 50-gram serving of processed meat - the type found in deli meat, sausage, bacon and hot dogs - were 51 percent more likely to develop type 2 diabetes. Those who consumed a 100-gram serving of red meat daily were shown to be at a 19 percent increased risk.

However, the researchers also found that when people adjusted their diets to replace red meat and processed meat with healthier options like nuts, low-fat dairy products and whole grains, their diabetes risk fell.

"Our study clearly shows that eating both unprocessed and processed red meat - particularly processed - is associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes," said Ann Pan, one of the researchers involved in the study.

She added that the fact that a person who eats a lot of meat can modify their chances of developing the disease through healthier eating is encouraging.

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