By Deborah Mitchell for EmaxHealth.com
You may want to think twice before you throw those hot dogs and sausages on the grill this summer. A new study reports that processed meats such as hot dogs, bologna, and sausage can raise the risk of type 2 diabetes by more than 50 percent.
Several recent studies have warned about the health dangers of one of America’s favorite foods, and now researchers from Harvard are chiming in. After evaluating 20 years of data from men who participated in the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study, 28 years of data from women in the Nurses’ Health Study I, and 14 years of data from women in the Nurses’ Health Study II, hot dogs and other processed meats did not fare well.
The analysis showed that a 50-gram daily serving of processed meat (e.g., one hot dog or sausage or two slices of bacon) was associated with a 51 percent increased risk of diabetes. When it comes to unprocessed red meat, the researchers determined that a 100-gram daily serving (which is about the size of a deck of playing cards) was associated with a 19 percent increased risk for type 2 diabetes.
Now for the good news: by substituting other sources rich in protein, such as whole grains, low-fat dairy, and nuts, for the processed meat, you can actually reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes. According to a Harvard news release, Frank Hu, a professor of nutrition and epidemiology, noted that “The good news is that such troubling risk factors can be offset by swapping red meat for a healthier protein.”