Los Angeles, .- Contrary to popular belief, both red and white meat have similar effects on blood cholesterol levels, says a study published Tuesday by the University of San Francisco (UCSF, for its acronym in English ).
The report found that the high consumption of both types of meat generates – consequently – a high level of cholesterol, higher compared to that produced by the consumption of proteins of vegetable origin.
The research, which excluded processed meats such as sausages or bacon, like fish, found that reducing red and white meats is more advisable to lower cholesterol levels than previously thought.
“When we planned this study, we expected red meat to have a greater adverse effect on blood cholesterol levels than white, but we were surprised that this is not the case,” said Ronald Krauss, lead author of the study.
The analysis, published today in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, was conducted by scientists from the Oakland Children’s Hospital Research Institute (CHORI), UCSF’s research unit at the hospital.
For both types of meats, “the effects on cholesterol are identical when saturated fat levels are equivalent,” says the study.
Krauss, also director of Research in Arteriosclerosis of CHORI, said that proteins that do not come from meat, such as vegetables, dairy products and legumes, have the best health benefit in relation to cholesterol.
The increase in cholesterol in both types of meat was observed regardless of whether the diet contained high levels of saturated fats, which increased the level of cholesterol in the blood to the same extent with each of the three protein sources.
“Our results indicate that the current recommendations to restrict red meats and not white ones should not be based solely on their effects on blood cholesterol,” the researcher noted.
However, the research does not exonerate red meat from negative effects on heart health and suggests further studies in this regard.
“In fact, other effects of red meat consumption may contribute to heart disease, and these effects should be explored in greater detail in an effort to improve health,” added Krauss. (EFEUSA)