This study found that people with high red meat intake, combined with low fruit and vegetable intake and a poor overall diet (which was found most frequently in males of low socioeconomic status) had biological markers indicating accelerated aging and poor renal function (early indicators of chronic kidney disease). Bottom line: eat less red meat, more whole grains, more fruits and vegetables for your health. From Medical Xpress:
A diet containing too much red meat and not enough fruit and vegetables could increase your body's 'biological age' and contribute to health problems. Research led by the University of Glasgow and published today in Aging, has found that a moderate increase in serum phosphate levels caused by red meat consumption, combined with a poor overall diet, increases biological age (miles on the clock) in contrast to chronological age (years of age).
The study, which looked at participants from the most deprived to the least deprived in the NHS Greater Glasgow Health Board area, also demonstrates that deprived males were the worst affected.
Data from the study suggests that accelerated biological ageing, and dietary derived phosphate levels among the most deprived males, were directly related to the frequency of red meat consumption. Researchers believe that excess red meat particularly affects this group because of their poor diet and "sub-optimal fruit and vegetable intake".
The research, led by the Institute of Cancer Sciences in collaboration with the Karolinska Institutet (Stockholm, Sweden), also found that high phosphate levels in deprived males correlated with reduced kidney function and even underlying mild to moderate chronic kidney disease.
Phosphate is naturally present in basic foodstuffs, including meats, fish, eggs, dairy products and vegetables. Intestinal absorption of naturally occurring phosphate is minimally regulated, as absorption is efficient, hence high supplementation results in markedly elevated levels of serum phosphate, which can have adverse health consequences. Indeed high phosphate levels, as a consequence of dietary intake, have already been linked to higher all-cause and cardiovascular mortality risk, premature vascular ageing and kidney disease.
The researchers observed significant relationships between serum phosphate and biological age markers, including DNA content and telomere length. (Original study.)