As these 128 scientific studies below demonstrate, meat-eaters are more likely to get a variety of diseases, including diabetes, cancer and heart disease. What’s more, when they have cancer, they may be more likely to die from it.
Overwhelming scientific evidence also shows that people who eat meat and other animal products are more likely to have high blood pressure and to suffer a heart attack or stroke.
Animal-eaters are also more likely to be overweight or obese, which themselves are risk factors for disease. And in young girls, eating red meat may lead to earlier puberty, which increases their chances of getting breast cancer, cardiovascular disease and becoming obese.
Scientists are looking at a number of reasons why eating animal products might cause diseases. Just a few possible factors include compounds formed when meat is processed, the way our bodies break down animal products during digestion, and the changes that animal products cause in our gut microbiomes.
Check out this list of 128 scientific journal articles (with summaries) that have linked eating animals with disease.
Lung cancer risk and red meat consumption among Iowa women.
Alavanja MC, Field RW, Sinha R, Brus CP, Shavers VL, Fisher EL, Curtain J, Lynch CF
This case-control study of over 900 people found that consumption of red meat, was associated with an increased risk of lung cancer even after controlling for total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, fruit, yellow-green vegetable consumption and smoking history
Dairy products, calcium, and prostate cancer risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis of cohort studies.
Aune D, Navarro Rosenblatt DA, Chan DS, Vieira AR, Vieira R, Greenwood DC, Vatten LJ, Norat T
This meta-analysis of 32 studies concluded that high intakes of dairy products, milk, low-fat milk, cheese, and total, dietary, and dairy calcium, but not supplemental or nondairy calcium, may increase total prostate cancer risk.
Meat consumption and the risk of type 2 diabetes: a systematic review and meta-analysis of cohort studies.
Aune D, Ursin G, Veierød MB
The results from this meta-analysis of 12 cohort studies suggest that meat consumption increases the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Red Meat and Colorectal Cancer.
This review of meta-analyses reported that red and processed meats significantly but moderately increase colorectal cancer risk by 20-30%.
The Strong Heart Study: adding biological plausibility to the red meat-cardiovascular disease association.
Banegas JR, Rodríguez-Artalejo F
The authors review evidence of the effects of red and processed meat on subclinical cardiovascular disease (CVD). The conclude that a low red-meat diet prevents preclinical and also symptomatic CVD.
Consumptions of Meat, Dietary Fat, and Fatty-acids and Prevalence of Overweight/Obesity in Children and Adolescents-a Cross-sectional Survey in Chengdu
Bao YX, Duan RN, Yang MZ, Chen YR, Tian G, Luo J, Cheng G
In this cross-sectional study of 1800 children in Chengdu, China, consumption of red meat was associated with overweight/obesity of girls aged 7-15 years.
Meat consumption as a risk factor for type 2 diabetes.
Barnard N, Levin S, Trapp C
The authors of this study reviewed evidence regarding eating meat as a risk factor for type 2 diabetes. The stated that meat-eaters had significantly higher risk of developing diabetes, compared with people who avoided meat. The effect of meat on diabetes risk appears to be due to its saturated fat and heme iron, among other factors.
Health Risks Associated with Meat Consumption: A Review of Epidemiological Studies.
Battaglia Richi E, Baumer B, Conrad B, Darioli R, Schmid A, Keller U
This article discusses Recent evidence from large prospective US and European cohort studies and from meta-analyses of epidemiological studies indicates that the long-term consumption of increasing amounts of red meat and particularly of processed meat is associated with an increased risk of total mortality, cardiovascular disease, colorectal cancer and type 2 diabetes. The authors conclude that recommendations for the consumption of unprocessed red meat and particularly of processed red meat should be more restrictive than existing recommendations.
Association between dietary meat consumption and incident type 2 diabetes: the EPIC-InterAct study.
Bendinelli B, Palli D, Masala G, Sharp SJ, Schulze MB, Guevara M, van der AD, Sera F, Amiano P, Balkau B, Barricarte A, Boeing H, Crowe FL, Dahm CC, Dalmeijer G, de Lauzon-Guillain B, Egeberg R, Fagherazzi G, Franks PW, Krogh V, Huerta JM, Jakszyn P, Khaw KT, Li K, Mattiello A, Nilsson PM, Overvad K, Ricceri F, Rolandsson O, Sánchez MJ, Slimani N, Sluijs I, Spijkerman AM, Teucher B, Tjonneland A, Tumino R, van den Berg SW, Forouhi NG, Langeberg C, Feskens EJ, Riboli E, Wareham NJ.
This prospective study in a large cohort of European adults found that those who eat high amounts of meat overall and red meat in particualr have a greater risk of type 2 diabetes.
Processed and Unprocessed Red Meat and Risk of Colorectal Cancer: Analysis by Tumor Location and Modification by Time.
Bernstein AM, Song M, Zhang X, Pan A, Wang M, Fuchs CS, Le N, Chan AT, Willett WC, Ogino S, Giovannucci EL, Wu K
in these two large cohorts of US health professionals, processed meat intake was positively associated with risk of CRC, particularly distal colon cancer.
Major dietary protein sources and risk of coronary heart disease in women.
Bernstein AM, Sun Q, Hu FB, Stampfer MJ, Manson JE, Willett WC
The data from this large prospective cohort study suggests that high red meat intake increases risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) and that CHD risk may be reduced importantly by shifting sources of protein in the US diet.
The impact of red and processed meat consumption on cardiovascular disease risk in women.
Bovalino S, Charleson G, Szoeke C
The results from this analysis of two cohorts support an association between red and processed meat consumption and CVD risk in women and suggest that the association is stronger for processed meat alone.
Consumption of animal products, olive oil and dietary fat and results from the Belgian case-control study on bladder cancer risk.
Brinkman MT, Buntinx F, Kellen E, Van Dongen MC, Dagnelie PC, Muls E, Zeegers MP
This European case-control study found a 50% increased risk of bladder cancer among those who ate the most cheese.
Health-related behaviours as predictors of mortality and morbidity in Australian Aborigines.
Burke V, Zhao Y, Lee AH, Hunter E, Spargo RM, Gracey M, Smith RM, Beilin LJ, Puddey IB
In this cross-sectional study of Western Australian Aborigines, risk of coronary heart disease rose with consumption of processed meats >once/week, and with eggs >twice/week.
Meat subtypes and their association with colorectal cancer: Systematic review and meta-analysis.
Carr PR, Walter V, Brenner H, Hoffmeister M
This meta-analysis suggests that red meatsubtypes differ in their association with colorectal cancer and its subtypes. Beef and lamb were both associated with higher risk of colorectal cancer. Beef was also associated with higher risk of colon cancer.
A Systematic Review of the Effects of Plant Compared with Animal Protein Sources on Features of Metabolic Syndrome.
Chalvon-Demersay T, Azzout-Marniche D, Arfsten J, Egli L, Gaudichon C, Karagounis LG, Tomé D
This literature review reported that soy protein consumption (with isoflavones), but not soy protein alone (without isoflavones) or other plant proteins (pea and lupine proteins, wheat gluten), leads to a 3% greater decrease in both total and LDL cholesterol compared with animal-sourced protein ingestion, especially in individuals with high fasting cholesterol concentrations.
Dairy products, calcium, and prostate cancer risk in the Physicians’ Health Study.
Chan JM, Stampfer MJ, Ma J, Gann PH, Gaziano JM, Giovannucci EL
This propective cohort study concluded that dairy products and calcium are associated with a greater risk of prostate cancer. Compared with men consuming < or =150 mg Ca/d from dairy products, men consuming >600 mg/d had a 32% higher risk of prostate cancer.
Red and processed meat consumption and risk of stroke: a meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies.
Chen GC, Lv DB, Pang Z, Liu QF
Findings from this meta-analysis indicate that consumption of red and/or processed meat increase risk of stroke, in particular, ischemic stroke.
Relationship between dietary factors and the number of altered metabolic syndrome components in Chinese adults: a cross-sectional study using data from the China Health and Nutrition Survey.
Cheng M, Wang H, Wang Z, Du W, Ouyang Y, Zhang B
This cross-sectional study of about 6,000 Chinese adults reported that risk factors for altered metabolic sydrome components include higher intake of meat, fish/seafood, and milk/dairy products.
Taiwanese vegetarians and omnivores: dietary composition, prevalence of diabetes and IFG.
Chiu TH, Huang HY, Chiu YF, Pan WH, Kao HY, Chiu JP, Lin MN, Lin CL
This Taiwanese study of over 4,300 Buddhist adults reported that women who avoided all meat reduced their risk of diabetes by 70% compared to those who ate meat; men reduced their risk by 45%.
Red Meat Intake and Risk of Breast Cancer Among Premenopausal Women.
Cho E, Chen WY, Hunter DJ, Stampfer MJ, Colditz GA, Hankinson SE, Willett WC
The authors of this large prospective cohort study concluded that higher red meat intake may be a risk factor for estrogen and progesterone receptor positive breast cancer among premenopausal women. Those who ate the most red meat had almost twice the risk of those who ate the least red meat.
Egg consumption and coronary artery calcification in asymptomatic men and women.
Choi Y, Chang Y, Lee JE, Chun S, Cho J, Sung E, Suh BS, Rampal S, Zhao D, Zhang Y, Pastor-Barriuso R, Lima JA, Shin H, Ryu S, Guallar E
In this study, participants who ate the most eggs, compared with those who ate the least, had 80% higher coronary artery calcium scores, which is a measure of heart disease risk.
Consumption of red and processed meat and esophageal cancer risk: meta-analysis.
Choi Y, Song S, Song Y, Lee JE
Findings from this meta-analysis suggested that a higher consumption of red meat was associated with a greater risk of esophageal cancer.
Socioeconomic and demographic drivers of red and processed meat consumption: implications for health and environmental sustainability.
Clonan A, Roberts KE, Holdsworth M
This report states that consumption of meat is increasing in lower-income countries across Latin American and East Asia, increasing the risk in those countries for noncommunicable diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and obesity.
A case-control study of galactose consumption and metabolism in relation to ovarian cancer.
Cramer DW, Greenberg ER, Titus-Ernstoff L, Liberman RF, Welch WR, Li E, Ng WG
This case-control study of the effects of dairy sugar on ovarian cancer risk suggested that certain genetic or biochemical features of dairy sugar metabolism may influence disease risk for particular types of ovarian cancer.
Diet rapidly and reproducibly alters the human gut microbiome.
David LA, Maurice CF, Carmody RN, Gootenberg DB, Button JE, Wolfe BE, Ling AV, Devlin AS, Varma Y, Fischbach MA, Biddinger SB, Dutton RJ, Turnbaugh PJ
This study demonstrated that eating meats, eggs and cheese even for a short time (5 days) caused measureable changes in the types and varieties of gut microbes. Animal foods increased the numbers of Bilophila organisms which may trigger inflammatory bowel disease.
Red and processed meat intake and cancer risk: Results from the prospective NutriNet-Santé cohort study.
Diallo A, Deschasaux M, Latino-Martel P, Hercberg S, Galan P, Fassier P, Allès B, Guéraud F, Pierre FH, Touvier M
In this prospective study, red meat intake was associated with significantly increased risk of overall cancers and breast cancer.
Egg consumption and risk of type 2 diabetes: a meta-analysis of prospective studies.
Djoussé L, Khawaja OA, Gaziano JM
This meta-analysis suggested a modest elevated risk of type 2 diabetes in those who eat more than three eggs per week.
Fatty acid consumption and incident type 2 diabetes: evidence from the E3N cohort study.
Dow C, Mangin M, Balkau B, Affret A, Boutron-Ruault MC, Clavel-Chapelon F, Bonnet F, Fagherazzi G
In this prospective study of over 71,000 women, those who had the highest level of fat in their diets increased their risk of type 2 diabetes by 26% compared to those who ate the least. Two specific types of fat, which are mostly found in meat, fish, and eggs, almost doubled the risk.
Associations between red meat and risks for colon and rectal cancer depend on the type of red meat consumed.
Egeberg R, Olsen A, Christensen J, Halkjær J, Jakobsen MU, Overvad K, Tjønneland A
In this Danish cohort study, the risk for colon cancer was significantly elevated in people who ate higher amounts of lamb. Risk for rectal cancer was elevated for those who ate the most pork.
Mortality from different causes associated with meat, heme iron, nitrates, and nitrites in the NIH-AARP Diet and Health Study: population based cohort study.
Etemadi A, Sinha R, Ward MH, Graubard BI, Inoue-Choi M, Dawsey SM, Abnet CC
This cohort study showed increased risks of death from any cause, as well as increased death due to nine different causes associated with both processed and unprocessed red meat. They authors stated that this risk was accounted for, in part, by heme iron and nitrate/nitrite from processed meat.
Adolescent meat intake and breast cancer risk.
Farvid MS, Cho E, Chen WY, Eliassen AH, Willett WC
This prospective study of over 44,000 women found that those who consumed the most total red meat during childhood were at 43% increased risk for developing premenopausal breast cancer, compared with women who consumed the least.
Dietary protein sources in early adulthood and breast cancer incidence: prospective cohort study.
Farvid MS, Cho E, Chen WY, Eliassen AH, Willett WC
This large prospective cohort study concluded that higher red meat intake in early adulthood may be a risk factor for breast cancer.
Meat consumption, diabetes, and its complications.
Feskens EJ, Sluik D, van Woudenbergh GJ
This review and meta-analysis reports that eating high amounts of processed red meat raised risk of type 2 diabetes by 32%. The authors also review evidence which has found that eating processed meat increases risk of coronary heart disease, and that eating processed and fresh red meat increase risk of stroke.
Associations of processed meat and unprocessed red meat intake with incident diabetes: the Strong Heart Family Study.
Fretts AM, Howard BV, McKnight B, Duncan GE, Beresford SA, Mete M, Eilat-Adar S, Zhang Y, Siscovick DS
This prospective cohort study of American Indians reported that the consumption of processed meat was associated with higher risk of diabetes.
Dietary patterns, meat intake, and the risk of type 2 diabetes in women.
Fung TT, Schulze M, Manson JE, Willett WC, Hu FB
The authors of this study concluded that the Western pattern of eating, especially a diet high in processed meats, may increase risk of type 2 diabetes in women. Higher risk of diabetes was seen for high intakes of red meat, total processed meats, bacon and hot dogs.
Dairy products and ovarian cancer: a pooled analysis of 12 cohort studies.
Genkinger JM, Hunter DJ, Spiegelman D, Anderson KE, Arslan A, Beeson WL, Buring JE, Fraser GE, Freudenheim JL, Goldbohm RA, Hankinson SE, Jacobs DR Jr, Koushik A, Lacey JV Jr, Larsson SC, Leitzmann M, McCullough ML, Miller AB, Rodriguez C, Rohan TE, Schouten LJ, Shore R, Smit E, Wolk A, Zhang SM, Smith-Warner SA.
This pooled analysis of 12 cohort studies reported a higher risk of ovarian cancer among women with high intakes of lactose, the primary sugar in dairy milk. Those who consumed the equivalent of 3 or more servings of milk per day increased their risk of ovarian cancer by 19%.
Dairy consumption and 10-y total and cardiovascular mortality: a prospective cohort study in the Netherlands.
Goldbohm RA, Chorus AM, Galindo Garre F, Schouten LJ, van den Brandt PA
In this cohort study of older adults in the Netherlands, dairy fat intake was associated with slightly increased all-cause and ischemic heart disease mortality among women.
Relation of time of introduction of cow milk protein to an infant and risk of type 1 diabetes mellitus.
This paper reviews several studies of infant feeding that show a causal relationship between time of introduction of formula containing cow milk protein and risk of type-1 diabetes.
Using multicountry ecological and observational studies to determine dietary risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease.
This review of evidence concluded that the most important dietary link to Alzheimer’s Disease appears to be meat consumption, with eggs and high-fat dairy also contributing.
Trends in diet and Alzheimer’s disease during the nutrition transition in Japan and developing countries.
This study using data from populations in Japan, India, China and Brazil found that as animal fat and calorie consumption increased, so did obesity rates and prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease.
Health risk factors associated with meat, fruit and vegetable consumption in cohort studies: A comprehensive meta-analysis.
Grosso G, Micek A, Godos J, Pajak A, Sciacca S, Galvano F, Boffetta P
This meta-analysis of 20 studies reported that people who eat more red meat are more likely to have high body mass index, and to be overweight or obese than those who eat less red meat.
Dairy products do not lead to alterations in body weight or fat mass in young women in a 1-y intervention.
Gunther CW, Legowski PA, Lyle RM, McCabe GP, Eagan MS, Peacock M, Teegarden D
Results from this randomized intervention study counter the recent notion that dairy products encourage weight loss. In fact, participants assigned to a high dairy intake group gained more weight over the course of a year than those in the medium dairy or usual diet groups.
Association of dietary protein consumption with incident silent cerebral infarcts and stroke: the ARIC study.
Haring B, Misialek JR, Rebholz CM, Petruski-Ivleva N, Gottesman RF, Mosley TH, Alonso A
This prospective cohort study reported that consumption of red meat may increase the risk of ischemic stroke. Individuals who ate the most red meat had a 47% increased risk for ischemic stroke, compared with those who ate the least. Those who ate the most eggs had a 41% increased risk for hemorrhagic stroke, compared with those who ate the least.
Association of meat and dairy consumption with normal weight metabolic obesity in men: the Qazvin Metabolic Diseases Study.
Hashemipour S, Esmailzadehha N, Mohammadzadeh M, Ziaee A
In this cross-sectional study of Iranian men, higher meat consumption was associated with visceral (around the abdomen) fat accumulation in normal weight individuals. Visceral fat is strongly associated with obesity-related complications like type 2 diabetes and coronary artery disease.
Red and processed meat intake and risk of esophageal adenocarcinoma: a meta-analysis of observational studies.
Huang W, Han Y, Xu J, Zhu W, Li Z
This meta-analysis indicates that eating red and processed meat may be associated with increased risk of esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC). Those who ate the most red meat were 31% more likely to get EAC; those who ate the most processed meat were 41% more likely.
Dietary iron intake and body iron stores are associated with risk of coronary heart disease in a meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies.
Hunnicutt J, He K, Xun P
In this meta-analysis looking at iron and heart disease, diets high in heme iron (found in meat) increased risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) by 57%. Diets high in non-heme iron (found in plants) did not increase risk of CHD.
Intolerance of cow’s milk and chronic constipation in children.
Iacono G, Cavataio F, Montalto G, Florena A, Tumminello M, Soresi M, Notarbartolo A, Carroccio A
This double-blind cross-over study found that cow’s milk can cause constipation in children with milk intolerance.
Dietary Patterns and Type 2 Diabetes: A Systematic Literature Review and Meta-Analysis of Prospective Studies.
Jannasch F, Kröger J, Schulze MB
This meta-analysis reported that eating patterns characterized by red and processed meat, refined grains, high-fat dairy, eggs, and fried products were positively associated with diabetes.
Higher childhood red meat intake frequency is associated with earlier age at menarche.
Jansen EC, Marín C, Mora-Plazas M, Villamor E
This study found that red meat intake during childhood leads to earlier onset of puberty in adolescent girls. The researchers emphasized that earlier menarche negatively affects disease risk for breast cancer, obesity, cardiovascular disease, and other chronic conditions later in life.
Cow’s milk challenge through human milk evoked immune responses in infants with cow’s milk allergy.
Järvinen KM, Mäkinen-Kiljunen S, Suomalainen H
This study showed that cow’s milk can cause an allergic response in breastfed infants whose mothers consume milk.
Meta-analyses of colorectal cancer risk factors.
Johnson CM, Wei C, Ensor JE, Smolenski DJ, Amos CI, Levin B, Berry DA
This meta-analysis found a significant positive correlation between colorectal cancer and red meat consumption. Those who ate 5 servings per week had a 13% greater risk of the cancer.
Processed and unprocessed red meat consumption and risk of heart failure: prospective study of men.
Kaluza J, Akesson A, Wolk A
Findings from this prospective study of men showed that eating low to moderate amounts of processed red meat was associated with an increased risk of heart failure.
Long-term processed and unprocessed red meat consumption and risk of heart failure: A prospective cohort study of women.
Kaluza J, Åkesson A, Wolk A
This prospective study of more than 44,000 Swedish women found that eating processed red meat was associated with higher risk of heart failure.
Long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, fish intake, and the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus.
Kaushik M, Mozaffarian D, Spiegelman D, Manson JE, Willett WC, Hu FB
This prospective cohort study reported that eating high amounts of fish may modestly increase risk of type 2 diabetes.Women who ate fish at least 5 times per week increased their risk of diabetes by 22%, compared to those who ate it less than once per month.
Red meat, poultry, and fish intake and breast cancer risk among Hispanic and Non-Hispanic white women: The Breast Cancer Health Disparities Study.
Kim AE, Lundgreen A, Wolff RK, Fejerman L, John EM, Torres-Mejía G, Ingles SA, Boone SD, Connor AE, Hines LM, Baumgartner KB, Giuliano A, Joshi AD, Slattery ML, Stern MC
This case-control study found that, among Hispanic women, those who ate the highest amounts red and processed meat increased their risk for breast cancer by 42%, compared with those who ate the least. Non-Hispanic women with the highest intakes of tuna increased their risk of breast cancer by 25%, compared with those who ate the least amount of tuna.
A review of potential metabolic etiologies of the observed association between red meatconsumption and development of type 2 diabetes mellitus.
Kim Y, Keogh J, Clifton P
This review of the effect of red and processed meated on type 2 diabetes stated saturated fat, high sodium levels, carcinogens, nitrates, heme iron, and other compounds found in red and processed meats may all contribute to decreased insulin sensitivity and other risk factors for type 2 diabetes.
Short-term exclusive breastfeeding predisposes young children with increased genetic risk of Type I diabetes to progressive beta-cell autoimmunity.
Kimpimäki T, Erkkola M, Korhonen S, Kupila A, Virtanen SM, Ilonen J, Simell O, Knip M
This study in Finland of 3,000 infants with genetically increased risk for developing diabetes showed that early introduction of cow’s milk increased susceptibility to type 1 diabetes.
Meat, fish, and ovarian cancer risk: Results from 2 Australian case-control studies, a systematic review, and meta-analysis.
Kolahdooz F, van der Pols JC, Bain CJ, Marks GC, Hughes MC, Whiteman DC, Webb PM; Australian Cancer Study (Ovarian Cancer) and the Australian Ovarian Cancer Study Group
This study reported that in two case-control studies, with a combination of over 4,000 female participants, those who ate the most processed meat were 18% more likely to get ovarian cancer.
Relationship between meat intake and the development of acute coronary syndromes: the CARDIO2000 case-control study.
Kontogianni MD1, Panagiotakos DB, Pitsavos C, Chrysohoou C, Stefanadis C.
In this randomized, case-control study, those who ate the highest amounts of red meat were more likely to have cardiac disease. White meat consumption showed less prominent results.
High-and low-fat dairy intake, recurrence, and mortality after breast cancer diagnosis.
Kroenke CH, Kwan ML, Sweeney C, Castillo A, Caan BJ
In this cohort study of about 1800 women, eating high-fat dairy was related to a higher risk of death after breast cancer diagnosis.
Red meat consumption is associated with the risk of type 2 diabetes in men but not in women: a Japan Public Health Center-based Prospective Study.
Kurotani K, Nanri A, Goto A, Mizoue T, Noda M, Oba S, Kato M, Matsushita Y, Inoue M, Tsugane S; Japan Public Health Center-based Prospective Study Group
This prospective cohort study of over 63,000 Japanese adults found that eating high amounts of red meat is associated with higher risk of type 2 diabetes, as compared to those who ate less red meat.
Prospective study of diet and ovarian cancer.
Kushi LH, Mink PJ, Folsom AR, Anderson KE, Zheng W, Lazovich D, Sellers TA
In this prospective cohort study of over 29,000 postmenopausal women, lactose (the sugar found in milk) moderately elevated risk of epithelial ovarian cancer. Eating eggs also increased risk of ovarian cancer.
Processed and unprocessed red meat consumption and hypertension in women.
Lajous M, Bijon A, Fagherazzi G, Rossignol E, Boutron-Ruault MC, Clavel-Chapelon F
In a cohort of over 44,000 French women, researchers observed that those who ate the most processed red meat were more likely to get hypertension (high blood pressure). Those who ate ≥5 servings of processed red meat per week had a 17% higher rate of hypertension than that of women who consumed less than one serving per week.
Milk and lactose intakes and ovarian cancer risk in the Swedish Mammography Cohort.
Larsson SC, Bergkvist L, Wolk A
In this cohort study, women who drank 2 or more glasses of milk per day had twice this risk of serous ovarian cancer as those who drank it seldom or never.
Red meat and processed meat consumption and all-cause mortality: a meta-analysis.
Larsson SC, Orsini N
In this meta-analysis, those who ate red meat and processed meat were more likely to die from any cause.
The cooked meat-derived mammary carcinogen 2-amino-1-methyl-6- phenylimidazo[4,5-b]pyridine promotes invasive behaviour of breast cancer cells. Toxicology.
Lauber SN, Gooderham NJ
This study concluded that a carcinogen from cooked meat could increase the likelihood that breast cancer cells will become metastatic, worsening existing disease.
Avoiding milk is associated with a reduced risk of insulin resistance and the metabolic syndrome: findings from the British Women’s Heart and Health Study.
Lawlor DA, Ebrahim S, Timpson N, Davey Smith G
This study of over 4,000 postmenopausal British women reported that those who had never drank milk had lower indicators of insulin resistance, lower body mass index, higher high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and lower incidence of type 2 diabetes than women who drank milk.
Low protein intake is associated with a major reduction in IGF-1, cancer, and overall mortality in the 65 and younger but not older population.
Levine ME, Suarez JA, Brandhorst S, Balasubramanian P, Cheng CW, Madia F, Fontana L, Mirisola MG, Guevara-Aguirre J, Wan J, Passarino G, Kennedy BK, Wei M, Cohen P, Crimmins EM, Longo VD
This study of over 6,300 American adults found that those who eat the most animal protein are more likely to die at a younger age. Those who ate the most animal protein increased their risk of dying from diabetes five-fold.
Red meat intake and risk of ESRD.
Lew QJ, Jafar TH, Koh HW, Jin A, Chow KY, Yuan JM, Koh WP
The authors of this prospective cohort study of over 63,000 Chinese adults reported that eating red meat may increase the risk of end-stage renal disease (ESRD) in the general population. In this study, replacing a single serving of red meat with another source of protein, such as soy products or legumes, cut the risk for disease by over 60%.
Associations between red meat intake and biomarkers of inflammation and glucose metabolism in women.
Ley SH, Sun Q, Willett WC, Eliassen AH, Wu K, Pan A, Grodstein F, Hu FB
An analysis of the diets and blood of over 3,600 women found that as total red meat consumption increased, biomarkers for disease risk also increased. These included C-reactive protein (a biomarker of infections and diseases including heart disease and cancer), hemoglobin A1c (an indicator of diabetes risk), and stored iron (a mineral which in excess is associated with heart disease, cancer, and diabetes). Weight also increased with increasing meat consumption.
Egg consumption and risk of cardiovascular diseases and diabetes: A meta-analysis.
Li Y, Zhou C, Zhou X, Li L
This meta-analysis suggests that people who eat higher amounts of eggs increase their risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes. People who ate the most eggs had a 19% increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and 68% increased risk of diabetes, compared with those who ate the fewest eggs. Among people who already had diabetes, those who ate the most eggs had an 83% higher risk of CVD than those who ate the fewest eggs.
Meat consumption, N-acetyl transferase 1 and 2 polymorphism and risk of breast cancer in Danish postmenopausal women.
Lilla C, Verla-Tebit E, Risch A, Jäger B, Hoffmeister M, Brenner H, Chang-Claude J
This study of over 24,000 Danish women reported that those who ate more meat (red meat, poultry, fish, and processed meat) had a significantly higher risk of breast cancer. Every 25 gram increase in total meat, red meat, and processed meat led to a 9, 15, and 23% increase in risk of breast cancer, respectively.
Cured meat, vegetables, and bean-curd foods in relation to childhood acute leukemia risk: A population based case-control study.
Liu CY, Hsu YH, Wu MT, Pan PC, Ho CK, Su L, Xu X, Li Y, Christiani DC; Kaohsiung Leukemia Research Group.
In this case-control study in China, eating cured or smoked meat and fish more than once a week was associated with a 74% increased risk of acute leukemia.
Dairy products intake and cancer mortality risk: a meta-analysis of 11 population-based cohort studies.
Lu W, Chen H, Niu Y, Wu H, Xia D, Wu Y
In this large meta-analysis, whole milk intake in men contributed to significantly elevated risk of death from prostate cancer. The higher the amount of whole milk that men typically drank, the higher their risk of death from prostate cancer.
Dietary protein intake and risk of type 2 diabetes in US men and women.
Malik VS, Li Y, Tobias DK, Pan A, Hu FB
This prospective cohort study of over 200,000 adults reported that those who consumed the most animal protein increased their risk for type 2 diabetes by 13%, compared with those who consumed the least animal protein.
Association between pre-pregnancy consumption of meat, iron intake, and the risk of gestational diabetes: the SUN project.
Marí-Sanchis A, Díaz-Jurado G, Basterra-Gortari FJ, de la Fuente-Arrillaga C, Martínez-González MA, Bes-Rastrollo M
This prospective study of over 3,200 Spanish women found that those who ate higher amounts of meat, especially red and processed meat, before pregnancy were significantly more likely to get gestational diabetes during pregnancy.
Low-fat yoghurt intake in pregnancy associated with increased child asthma and allergic rhinitis risk: a prospective cohort study.
Maslova E, Halldorsson TI, Strøm M, Olsen SF
This prospective cohort study of over 61,000 pregnant mothers and their children reported that mothers who ate yogurt during pregnancy were more likely to have children who later developed asthma and allergic rhinitis.
Usual consumption of specific dairy foods is associated with breast cancer in the Roswell Park Cancer Institute Databank and BioRepository.
McCann SE, Hays J, Baumgart CW, Weiss EH, Yao S, Ambrosone CB
This case-control study found that higher intakes of American, cheddar, and cream cheeses were associated with an increased risk of breast cancer. Participants who drank milk were more likely than those who did not to have estrogen receptor-negative breast cancer.
Unprocessed red and processed meats and risk of coronary artery disease and type 2 diabetes–an updated review of the evidence.
Micha R, Michas G, Mozaffarian D
In this meta-analysis of cohort studies, significantly higher risk of coronary heart disease is seen among people who eat processed meat. Eating both red meat and processed meat were associated with increased risk of type 2 diabetes.
Red and processed meat consumption and risk of incident coronary heart disease, stroke, and diabetes mellitus: a systematic review and meta-analysis.
Micha R, Wallace SK, Mozaffarian D
This meta-analysis concluded that eating processed meats is associated with higher incidence of coronary heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Milk intake and risk of mortality and fractures in women and men: cohort studies.
Michaëlsson K, Wolk A, Langenskiöld S, Basu S, Warensjö Lemming E, Melhus H, Byberg L
This large prospective study in Sweden found that, among people drinking 200 mL of milk per day, there was an increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease.
Associations of red and processed meat with survival among patients with cancers of the upper aerodigestive tract and lung.
Miles FL, Chang SC, Morgenstern H, Tashkin D, Rao JY, Cozen W, Mack T, Lu QY, Zhang ZF
This analysis of patients with cancers of the upper aerodigestive tract (UADT) found that those who ate the highest amounts of red or processed meats were more likely to die from their cancer. Similarly, among patients with lung cancer, their was also some increased risk of dying from the cancer among those who ate the most processed or red meats.
A prospective study of dietary calcium, dairy products and prostate cancer risk
Mitrou PN, Albanes D, Weinstein SJ, Pietinen P, Taylor PR, Virtamo J, Leitzmann MF
The results from this large prospective study suggest that intake of calcium or some related component contained in dairy foods is associated with increased risk of prostate cancer.
Adherence to cancer prevention recommendations and antioxidant and inflammatory status in premenopausal women.
Morimoto Y, Beckford F, Cooney RV, Franke AA, Maskarinec G
This cross-sectional study of 275 women reported that those who avoid red meat are more likely to be at a healthy weight and have lower levels of chronic inflammation and oxidative stress than those who eat red meat.
Meat, fish, and colorectal cancer risk: the European Prospective Investigation into cancer and nutrition.
Norat T, Bingham S, Ferrari P, Slimani N, Jenab M, Mazuir M, Overvad K, Olsen A, Tjønneland A, Clavel F, Boutron-Ruault MC, Kesse E, Boeing H, Bergmann MM, Nieters A, Linseisen J, Trichopoulou A, Trichopoulos D, Tountas Y, Berrino F, Palli D, Panico S, Tumino R, Vineis P, Bueno-de-Mesquita HB, Peeters PH, Engeset D, Lund E, Skeie G, Ardanaz E, González C, Navarro C, Quirós JR, Sanchez MJ, Berglund G, Mattisson I, Hallmans G, Palmqvist R, Day NE, Khaw KT, Key TJ, San Joaquin M, Hémon B, Saracci R, Kaaks R, Riboli E
This prospective cohort study of over 470,000 European adults found that risk of colorectal cancer is higher among those who eat high amounts of red and processed meat .
Dairy products and breast cancer: the IGF- 1, estrogen, and bGH hypothesis.
Outwater JL, Nicholson A, Barnard N
This article discusses the hormones, growth factors, fat and various chemical contaminants found in dairy products that have been implicated in the proliferation of human breast cancer cells.
Changes in red meat consumption and subsequent risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus: three cohorts of US men and women.
Pan A, Sun Q, Bernstein AM, Manson JE, Willett WC, Hu FB
By tracking diet and health of participants over 4 years, this large study found that eating more than 1/2 serving of red meat per day was associated with a 48% elevated risk of diabetes. Reducing red meat was associated with a 14% lower risk of diabetes.
Meat consumption and colorectal cancer risk: an evaluation based on a systematic review of epidemiologic evidence among the Japanese population.
Pham NM, Mizoue T, Tanaka K, Tsuji I, Tamakoshi A, Matsuo K, Wakai K, Nagata C, Inoue M, Tsugane S, Sasazuki S; Research Group for the Development and Evaluation of Cancer Prevention Strategies in Japan.
This systematic review of 19 studies concluded that eating high amounts of red meat and processed meat may increase risk of colorectal cancer or colon cancer among the Japanese population.
Dairy, calcium, vitamin D and ovarian cancer risk in African–American women.
Qin B, Moorman PG, Alberg AJ, Barnholtz-Sloan JS, Bondy M, Cote ML, Funkhouser E, Peters ES, Schwartz AG, Terry P, Schildkraut JM, Bandera EV
In this case-control study of African-American women, those who drank whole milk were more likely to have ovarian cancer.
Milk consumption is a risk factor for prostate cancer: meta-analysis of case-control studies.
Qin LQ, Xu JY, Wang PY, Kaneko T, Hoshi K, Sato A
This meta-analysis of 11 case-control studies determined milk consumption was positively associated with prostate cancer.
Milk consumption is a risk factor for prostate cancer in Western countries: evidence from cohortstudies.
Qin LQ, Xu JY, Wang PY, Tong J, Hoshi K
This meta-analysis suggests that drinking milk and eating dairy products may increase the risk of prostate cancer.
Egg, red meat, and poultry intake and risk of lethal prostate cancer in the prostate specific antigen-era: incidence and survival.
Richman EL, Kenfield SA, Stampfer MJ, Giovannucci EL, Chan JM
In this prospective study of more than 27,000 men, those who ate 2.5 eggs per week, increased their risk for a deadly form of prostate cancer by 81%, compared with men who consumed less than half an egg per week.
Processed Meat and Colorectal Cancer Risk: A Pooled Analysis of Three Italian Case-Control Studies.
Rosato V, Tavani A, Negri E, Serraino D, Montella M, Decarli A, La Vecchia C, Ferraroni M
This study analyzed the results from three case-control studies of meat consumption and gastric cancer in Southern Europe. Participants who ate the most processed meat were significantly more likely to get colon cancer, and particularly proximal colon cancer.
Is there a relationship between red or processed meat intake and obesity? A systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies.
Rouhani MH, Salehi-Abargouei A, Surkan PJ, Azadbakht L
This meta-analysis revealed that red and processed meat intake is directly associated with risk of obesity, and higher body mass index and waist circumference.
Meat, fish, and esophageal cancer risk: a systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis.
Salehi M, Moradi-Lakeh M, Salehi MH, Nojomi M, Kolahdooz F
This literature review found that people who ate the highest levels of red meat and processed meat had significantly increased risk of esophageal cancers.
Red and processed meat consumption and risk of glioma in adults: A systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies.
Saneei P, Willett W, Esmaillzadeh A
In this meta-analysis of 18 observational studies, researchers reported that those who ate higher amounts of unprocessed red meat were somewhat more likely to have gliomas.
Significance of cow’s milk protein antibodies as risk factor for childhood IDDM: interaction with dietary cow’s milk intake and HLA-DQB1 genotype.
Saukkonen T, Virtanen SM, Karppinen M, Reijonen H, Ilonen J, Räsänen L, Akerblom HK, Savilahti E
In this case-control study, children with type 1 diabetes (IDDM) have higher levels of cow’s milk protein antibodies than their sibling controls, and these high levels of antibodies are independent risk markers for IDDM.
Intake of animal products and stroke mortality in the Hiroshima/Nagasaki Life Span Study.
Sauvaget C, Nagano J, Allen N, Grant EJ, Beral V
Processed meat intake and incidence of Type 2 diabetes in younger and middle-aged women.
Schulze MB, Manson JE, Willett WC, Hu FB
In this prospective cohort study of over 91,000 American women, those who ate meat 5 or more times per week were 91% more likely to get type 2 diabetes than those who ate meat less than once per week. Frequent consumption of bacon, hot dogs, and sausage was each associated with an increased risk of diabetes.
Food groups and risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus: a systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective studies.
Schwingshackl L, Hoffmann G, Lampousi AM, Knüppel K, Iqbal K, Schwedhelm C, Bechthold A, Schlesinger S, Boeing H
This meta-analysis of prospective studies found increased risk of type 2 diabetes with increasing consumption of red meat and processed meat.
Dietary protein from different food sources, incident metabolic syndrome and changes in its components: An 11-year longitudinal study in healthy community-dwelling adults.
Shang X, Scott D, Hodge A, English DR, Giles GG, Ebeling PR, Sanders KM
In this cohort study of over 5,300 participants who were tracked for over 11 years, those who ate the most chicken and red meat were more likely to get metabolic syndrome.
Meat intake and mortality: a prospective study of over half a million people.
Sinha R, Cross AJ, Graubard BI, Leitzmann MF, Schatzkin A
This prospective cohort study of over 500,000 people found that eating red and processed meat was associated with modest increases in death from any cause, death from cancer, and death from cardiovascular disease.
Dietary intake of total, animal, and vegetable protein and risk of type 2 diabetes in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC)-NL study.
Sluijs I, Beulens JW, van der A DL, Spijkerman AM, Grobbee DE, van der Schouw YT
This prospective cohort study of over 38,000 European adults reported a more than two-fold increase in risk of type 2 diabetes for those who ate the most animal protein.The authors concluded that diets high in animal protein are associated with an increased diabetes risk.
Whole milk intake is associated with prostate cancer-specific mortality among U.S. male physicians.
Song Y, Chavarro JE, Cao Y, Qiu W, Mucci L, Sesso HD, Stampfer MJ, Giovannucci E, Pollak M, Liu S, Ma J
In this prospective cohort study of over 21,000 men, those who drank whole milk were more likely to get prostate cancer. Among men with prostate cancer already, those who drank whole milk were more likely to die from prostate cancer. Those who drank skim and lowfat milk were more likely to get non-agressive prostate cancer.
A prospective study of red meat consumption and type 2 diabetes in middle-aged and elderly women: the women’s health study.
Song Y, Manson JE, Buring JE, Liu S
The data from this prospective cohort study indicate that eating high amounts of red meat, especially processed meats, may increase risk of developing type 2 diabetes in women.Those who ate processed meat at least 5 times per week were almost one and a half times more likely to get diabetes than those who ate processed meat less than once per month.
Fish Intake in Pregnancy and Child Growth: A Pooled Analysis of 15 European and US Birth Cohorts.
Stratakis N, Roumeliotaki T, Oken E, Barros H, Basterrechea M, Charles MA, Eggesbø M, Forastiere F, Gaillard R, Gehring U, Govarts E, Hanke W, Heude B, Iszatt N, Jaddoe VW, Kelleher C, Mommers M, Murcia M, Oliveira A, Pizzi C, Polańska K, Porta D, Richiardi L, Rifas-Shiman S, Schoeters G, Sunyer J, Thijs C, Viljoen K, Vrijheid M, Vrijkotte TG, Wijga AH, Zeegers MP, Kogevinas M, Chatzi L
In this very large study, mothers who ate a lot of fish during pregnancy were more likely to have children who would later become obese. Those who ate fish more than three times per week had children with higher body mass indexes through early childhood when compared to those who ate less fish per week. Researchers suspect chemical pollutants found in fish may alter fat metabolism and contribute to weight gain.
Red meat intake may increase the risk of colon cancer in Japanese, a population with relatively low red meat consumption.
Takachi R, Tsubono Y, Baba K, Inoue M, Sasazuki S, Iwasaki M, Tsugane S; Japan Public Health Center-Based Prospective Study Group
In this prospective cohort study, women who ate higher amounts of red meat and men who ate higher amounts of any type of meat were significantly more likely to get colon cancer.
Meat, dietary heme Iron, and risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus: the Singapore Chinese Health Study.
Talaei M, Wang YL, Yuan JM, Pan A, Koh WP
In this prospective cohort study in China of over 63,000 adults, red meat (pork, beef, lamb), poultry and fish intake were associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. Those who ate the most red meat increased their risk by 23%.
Fish Consumption, Mercury Levels, and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
Tessman R, Uher M
This case-control study found that high mercury levels in the body associated with fish and shellfish consumption increased risk for developing Lou Gehrig’s disease (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis [ALS]).
Type of Vegetarian Diet, Body Weight, and Prevalence of Type 2 Diabetes
Tonstad S, Butler T, Yan R, Fraser GE
This prospective study compared vegans, lacto-ovo-vegetarians, semi-vegetarians, pesco-tarians and non-vegetarians. The more animal products, such as red meat and fish, that were included in the diet, the greater the risk of type 2 diabetes.
American Cancer Society (ACS) Nutrition and Physical Activity Guidelines after colon cancer diagnosis and disease-free (DFS), recurrence-free (RFS), and overall survival (OS) in CALGB 89803 (Alliance).
Van Blarigan E, Fuchs CS, Niedzwiecki D.
Among patients with stage 3 colon cancer, those with a healthy body mass index who exercised and followed a diet high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and low in red/processed meats had longer overall survival and disease-free survival rates, compared with patients who did not meet these parameters.
Dietary fat and meat intake in relation to risk of type 2 diabetes in men.
van Dam RM, Willett WC, Rimm EB, Stampfer MJ, Hu FB
This prospective cohort study of over 42,000 males found that frequent consumption of processed meat was associated with a higher risk for type 2 diabetes
Prospective Study of Cured Meats Consumption and Risk of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease in Men.
Varraso R, Jiang R, Barr RG, Willett WC, Camargo CA Jr
This prospective study of over 42,000 men found that those who ate cured meats daily had more than two and half times the risk of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) compared with those who ate these products rarely or never.
The association of meat intake and the risk of type 2 diabetes may be modified by body weight.
Villegas R, Shu XO, Gao YT, Yang G, Cai H, Li H, Zheng W
In this prospective cohort study of Chinese women, processed meat intake was positively associated with the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Maternal Western dietary patterns and the risk of developing a cleft lip with or without a cleft palate.
Vujkovic M, Ocke MC, van der Spek PJ, Yazdanpanah N, Steegers EA, Steegers-Theunissen RP
In this case-control study of women in the Netherlands, those women with a “Western dietary pattern,” (high intakes of organ meat, red meat, processed meat, pizza, legumes, potatoes, French fries, condiments, and mayonnaise, but low intakes of fruits) had an approximately two-fold higher risk of a cleft lip or cleft palate among their offspring.
Meat consumption and colorectal cancer risk in Japan: The Takayama study.
Wada K, Oba S, Tsuji M, Tamura T, Konishi K, Goto Y, Mizuta F, Koda S, Hori A, Tanabashi S, Matsushita S, Tokimitsu N, Nagata C
This prospective cohort study of over 30,000 adults in Japan found that those who ate the most meat were 36% more likely to get colorectal cancer than those who ate the least meat. Red meat similarly increased risk by 44%. The authors concluded that abstaining from excessive consumption of meat might be protective against developing colorectal cancer.
Red meat intake is positively associated with non-fatal acute myocardial infarction in the Costa Rica Heart Study.
Wang D, Campos H, Baylin A
This case-control study of over 4,000 people found that the odds of acute MI (heart attack) increased significantly with increasing consumption of red meat and cured meat.
Red and processed meat consumption and mortality: dose-response meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies.
Wang X, Lin X, Ouyang YY, Liu J, Zhao G, Pan A, Hu FB
This meta-analysis indicated that eating higher amounts of red meat and processed meat are associated with an increased risk of death from any cause, death from cardiovascular disease and death from cancer.
Prognostic value of elevated levels of intestinal microbe-generated metabolite trimethylamine-n-oxide in patients with heart failure: refining the gut hypothesis.
Wilson Tang WH, Wang Z, Fan Y, Levison B, Hazen JE, Donahue LM, Wu Y, Hazen SL
In a study that tracked 720 patients who had previously been treated for heart failure, those with the highest levels of trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) in their blood had a 3.4-fold increase risk of dying, compared with those with the lowest levels. TMAO is produced during digestion of certain foods, including organ meats, red meat, and eggs. Its levels in the blood are also affected by other factors, including gut microbiota.
Potential health hazards of eating red meat.
This article analyzes six prospective cohort studies. It reports that eating 100 grams of red meat per day increased the risk for stroke and for breast cancer, death from heart disease, colorectal cancer, and advanced prostate cancer.
Dietary Protein Sources and Incidence of Breast Cancer: A Dose-Response Meta-Analysis of Prospective Studies.
Wu J, Zeng R, Huang J, Li X, Zhang J, Ho JC, Zheng Y
In this meta-analysis, increasing consumption of red meat, fresh red meat and processed meat were associated with increasing risk of breast cancer.
Nutritional factors in relation to endometrial cancer: a report from a population-based case-control study in Shanghai, China.
Xu WH, Dai Q, Xiang YB, Zhao GM, Ruan ZX, Cheng JR, Zheng W, Shu XO
This case-control study of endometrial cancer found that people who ate the most animal products had nearly four times the risk of cancer, compared with those who ate the least animal products. Cancer risk increased as protein and fat from animal products was increased.
Red Meat Consumption and the Risk of Stroke: A Dose-Response Meta-analysis of Prospective Cohort Studies.
Yang C, Pan L, Sun C, Xi Y, Wang L, Li D
The findings from this study indicate that high consumption of red meat, especially processed red meat, increases the risk of stroke.
Red and processed meat consumption and gastric cancer risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis.
Zhao Z, Yin Z, Zhao Q
This meta-analysis found that those who ate the most red meat were 1.67 times more likely to have gastric cancer than those who ate the least red meat. Those who ate the most processed meat were 1.76 times more likely to have gastric cancer than those who ate the least processed meat.
Meat consumption is associated with esophageal cancer risk in a meat- and cancer-histological-type dependent manner.
Zhu HC, Yang X, Xu LP, Zhao LJ, Tao GZ, Zhang C, Qin Q, Cai J, Ma JX, Mao WD, Zhang XZ, Cheng HY, Sun XC
This meta-analysis reported that high intake of red meat was associated with an increased risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma. High meat intake, especially processed meat, is likely to increase esophageal adenocarcinoma risk.