Food Choice Consequences

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Story Updated: Mar 8, 2013

..and bypass the bologna...a huge new European study has now linked processed meats to premature death.

The study included nearly a half-million men and women from all over Europe...and focused on the potential link between processed meats, heart disease and cancer. None of the participants reported any major illness at the beginning of the study, and all volunteered personal information on their diet, lifestyle habits and physical activity.

A diet high in processed meat mainly red processed meat was linked to other unhealthy choices. Men and women who ate the most processed meat ate the fewest fruit and veggies... and were also more likely to smoke. Men who ate a lot of meat also tended to drink more alcohol.

The data also showed that a person's risk of premature death increased with the amount of processed meat eaten. The team estimates if processed meat consumption was limited to 20 gram per day...more than 3-percent of deaths could be prevented.

Anther interesting finding from this study. A small amount of red meat appeared to be beneficial...which the researchers believe is due to the fact that meat provides important nutrients and vitamins when eaten in moderation.

I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV with the news doctors are reading health news that matters to you.

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Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, a nonprofit independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association, is part of a family of companies that finances and delivers vital health care services to 1.8 million people across upstate New York. Excellus BlueCross BlueShield provides access to high-quality, affordable health coverage, including valuable health-related resources that our members use every day, such as cost-saving prescription drug discounts and wellness tracking tools in our Step Up program. To learn more, visit www.excellusbcbs.com