One of the most controversial foods consumed is meat. In general, there are two extremes associated with meat; those who over consume and those who chose not to eat meat at all. Of course there are concerns associated with over consumption of meat such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, and metabolic syndromes. Also, diets high in meat have high protein content so those individuals will sometimes not receive enough energy from carbohydrates, ultimately putting strain on the kidneys, leading to dehydration and ketosis (Wyness, et al., p. 35).
When considering negative effects of meat consumption, the main focus is weight management, cholesterol, cancer, and coronary heart disease. With societies growing numbers of obese individuals, finding causes and significant resources to improve management is important. In multiple studies, people eating meat have a prevalence to be over weight of approximately 5-46%. During these studies, it is hard to establish factors to prove eating meat is cause for obesity because people eating meat are commonly compared to those who don’t. Vegetarians are more likely to live a healthier life style and be health conscious so prevalence is much smaller (Wyness, et al., p. 49). “Mainly because of high energy density and fat content, meat consumption has been considered a determinant of weight gain” (Vergnaud, p. 398). Though it is a determinant in weight, cutting intake of red meat will not effectively manage weight. A combination of meat, vegetables fruit, decreased total energy intake, and increased physical activity is equally important to receive adequate results (Vergnaud, p. 403).
Also associate with meat and obesity are cholesterol and coronary heart disease. “Coronary heart disease is responsible for more than 190,000 deaths in the United Kingdom alone” (Vergnaud, p. 51). Study investigations found that higher intake of red meats were significantly associated with increased risk of coronary heart disease in both men and women (Wyness, et al., p. 52.) One important influence on cardiovascular diseases such as coronary heart disease is blood cholesterol levels. High levels of LDL-cholesterol with low levels of HDL- cholesterol increase risks of cardiovascular disease. Cholesterol can be influenced by balancing different types of fatty acids in the diet. Trans fatty acids and saturated fatty acids have a more potent effect on cholesterol because they increase the bad, LDL, and decrease that good, HDL (Wyness, et al., p. 54-55).
Along with coronary heart disease having a major impact on individuals, cancer is another common disease with negative association to meat. Studies conducted for correlation between cancer and meat consumption are commonly compared between meat-eaters and vegetarians so like obesity, it is difficult to determine if it is actually a cause because vegetarians in general are more health conscious. People who eat meat may have a more common occurrence of cancer but...