In most of the world, red meat is considered a delicacy; something only to be eaten on the most special of occasions. However, in America, red meat is a common staple in many homes and restaurants. While a steak can be a tasty treat, consuming it frequently can cause long-term health issues. Red meat is dense in calories, fat, and cholesterol. Many people have adopted the lifestyle of “meatless Mondays”, where they do not consume any meat. This is an easy way to dip your toes into reducing your meat, especially red meat intake. Losing weight is just one of the many health benefits cutting out red meat can do for you. Here are 10 things that happen to your body when you stop eating red meat.
Cutting out red meat can reduce your waistline because of the dense calories red meat has. A three-ounce serving of beef can be around 170 calories while a portion of beans is about 100 calories and a serving of tofu is 70 calories. Even though the calorie difference between beans, tofu, and red meat ranges from 70-100 calories, it adds up over an extended period of time. Besides, it is quite rare to ever be served the recommended portion size at home or in a restaurant. This means that if you are eating out, or even eating at home but not watching your portion size, you are getting more than 170 calories. Other sources of protein are often easier to digest and do not cause as much indigestion as red meat.
Balance your PH Levels
A healthy body is a balanced body. We can balance the PH levels in our bodies through what we eat and drink. Red meat, flour, and soda are all very high in acidity levels, which throw off our natural PH level. An imbalance in PH levels in the body can result in bone density loss and muscle density loss. For women alone, an imbalance in PH levels can cause yeast infections and other bacterial infections that are uncomfortable or embarrassing. High acidity in the body is a breeding ground for disease and illness; especially if stress or lack of sleep is a common theme in your life. Eating more fruits and vegetables can balance out the acidity levels of red meat and other high acidity foods.
Red meat is difficult for the body to digest and many people complain of bloating, upset stomach, constipation, or gas after eating a hearty steak or a sandwich made with red meat. The result of less uncomfortable bloating is due to the fact that you have likely replaced red meat on your plate with more vegetables or legumes. Reduction of bloat is not totally exclusive to cutting out red meat; it’s incorporating more fibre-rich alternative proteins. These fibrous and hearty alternatives create good bacteria in your stomach.
If your skin has been feeling dull and tired, maybe it’s time to rethink what you are putting into your body. A diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables is the best remedy for clear skin. Fruits and vegetables are rich in vitamins that fight free radicals like vitamins A, C, and E. A slow digestive tract, like when you are experiencing constipation, can result in dull skin. If you are looking for a red meat substitute, fish is an excellent source of protein and vitamins that you need to look and feel your best. Fish is rich in Omega 3’s and Omega 6 fatty acids. Reducing your red meat intake also positively impacts your liver and kidneys. These two organs are responsible for clearing out any impurities and toxins in your body.
Lowering your cholesterol can be tough especially if you are still regularly consuming heavy amounts of red meat. Since red meat is high in saturated fats, which have been linked to raising cholesterol levels, you might want to rethink that Sunday steak you love. Even though saturated fats can benefit you, like the kind in avocados, it’s still important to remember that you should only get 7% of your daily calories from fat. The difference between eating an avocado and eating red meat is that an avocado is rich in potassium and other vitamins. In conclusion, red meat is high in protein, but difficult to digest and puts a strain on your body and organs.
Reduce Your Risk of Serious Disease
Red meat is high in saturated fat and certain cuts contain more than others. A diet high in saturated fats causes obesity, diabetes, and an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease. In addition, heavy red meat consumption increases cholesterol levels. This excess of cholesterol that lines the artery walls is the number one cause of heart attack. When the body consumes carnitine through red meat a compound called Trimethylamine-N-oxid is released. This compound negatively impacts how the body metabolizes cholesterol. Furthermore, new research in Alzheimer studies has begun to examine a link between Alzheimer’s and red meat consumption.
While steak may have always been the typical “hungry man” meal, eating red meat has actually been shown to raise estrogen levels in the body for men and women. Any sort of hormonal imbalance will negatively impact the body and mind causing all sorts of other issues. Because the body needs more time to digest red meat, your body sends out signals to go into relax mode or sleep mode. As a result, you might feel sleepy after a meat-filled meal. Most people immediately notice the increased energy level once they reduce or completely cut red meat out of their life.
Reduce Your Risk for Cancer
In certain studies, it has been found that red meat is one of the main links to cancers like colon or bowel cancer. People who eat 50 grams of red meat or more a day are 18% more likely to develop bowel cancer. As mentioned before, many people have complained of constipation or poor digestion after consuming meat. Another study that looked at 29 different individuals who consumed red meat frequently had a 28% increase of developing colon cancer. Those with a genetic predisposition to bowel and colon cancers should be especially wary of their red meat consumption. When meat is cooked several different compounds are released, including nitrates, which have been linked to certain cancers.
Save the Earth
Cows use a lot of natural resources like land, water, and grains. Experts estimate that average American will consume 270 pounds of meat every year. Most countries only consume about 4 pounds of meat per person each year. About 59 million tons of cattle and buffalo are produced annually. This massive production of cattle and other agricultural animals like sheep and goats has been shown to be the cause of 51% of Global greenhouse emissions. You might not think that your small life change, like cutting out meat, can make a big impact, but small changes lead to big changes. Not only is reducing or eliminating red meat from your diet good for you and your body, but it’s also good for the Earth and everyone who lives here.
Red meat is high in protein; it does not contain the same vitamins and minerals as other alternative protein sources. One of the main missing vitamins and minerals that red meat eaters are often deficient in is magnesium. Magnesium improves heart health, regulates cholesterol and insulin, provides better absorption of calcium, improves sleep, and promotes liver health. Supplementing magnesium with a daily vitamin supplement can help reduce or eliminate a deficiency. Always remember that it’s important to know about what you are eating is eating. Cattle graze on grass and much of the soil today is low in magnesium; because of this, you are not able to get the magnesium your body needs to function well.