New research released today suggests that cutting your meat intake to 3 meals a week could save the NHS £1.2 billion pounds each year while reducing early deaths by as many as 45,000.
The research conducted by Oxford University looked at different dietary options and concluded that diets with less meat could cut deaths from heart disease by around 31,000, cancer by 9,000 and strokes by 5,000 each year.
In particular, the research found that processed meats, such as cheap sausages and burgers were more unhealthy due to the high levels of salt and fat. Staggeringly, the research, commissioned by Friends of the Earth found that a supermarket chicken now contain 2.7 times more fat than it did in 1970 and 30 percent less protein!
Friends of the Earth’s Director of Policy and Campaigns, Craig Bennett said: “Eating less and better meat is a win win but we need the Government to act too – at the moment it promotes unhealthy high-meat diets and funds damaging factory farms”. He adds, “We don’t need to go vegetarian to look after ourselves and our planet – but we do need to cut down on meat.”
Other reported benefits include the curbing of deforestation and helping control climate change.
The research really does make you think about the quality of the meat we buy from the supermarket and its effect on our body. How much meat do you eat each week?