Monday, March 23, 2009

Public Service Announcement [UPDATED]
Yeah, I know, it's time for Media Monday, but I'm not really in the mood for that this week. I did see one film - Gomorra - which I recommend if you like your mafia movies realistic. But I'll come back to that next week.

Instead, take a look at this new study showing the relationship between consumption of red meat and early mortality. We knew, of course, that red meat - even in what is considered moderate amounts - is not good for us. But this "rolls royce of studies on this topic", surveying more than half a million people, spells it out pretty dramatically.
[T]hose who consumed the equivalent of about a small hamburger every day were more than 30 percent more likely to die during the 10 years they were followed, mostly from heart disease and cancer. Sausage, cold cuts and other processed meats also increased the risk.
In contrast, routine consumption of fish, chicken, turkey and other poultry decreased the risk of death by a small amount, the study found.
Note that, sadly pork, counts against you as a red meat and not "the other white meat" they like to advertise.

I have lots of strategies for cutting back on meat consumption: Meatless Mondays, etc., and I'm getting better at them over the last year or so. The smartest, though, is my decision to generally not keep any meat in the house, unless you count cans of tuna. And definitely no red meat stored in the freezer. Freezers are for bags of vegetables (aka ice packs in case of injury), ice trays (usually empty), and vodka. My resolve to eat healthily (which surely fades by 6 pm) pales in comparison to the laziness that keeps me from going all the way to the store, where the cows call out to me by name.

[UPDATE: In comments, Doug asks some good questions. Tracking down the actual study and looking at the stats seemed like a good idea for getting to the bottom of it, until I actually looked at the stats and tried to make sense of them. Would take me a while (10 years of studying statistics?) to figure it all out, but if you're any good at that sort of thing, have at it. Let us know what you discover.

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