Study: Lots of red meat increases mortality risk

CHICAGO (AP) -- A new study finds that older Americans who eat large amounts of red and processed meats face a greater risk of death from heart disease and cancer.

The study of a half-million men and women -- ages 50 to 71 years old -- is the largest of its kind.

It found that over 10 years, eating the equivalent of a quarter-pound hamburger each day gave men a 22 percent higher risk of dying of cancer. It gave them a 27 percent higher risk of dying of heart disease.

That's compared to those who ate just 5 ounces of red meat a week.

Women who ate large amounts of red meat had a 50 percent higher risk of dying of heart disease than women who ate less. They had a 20 percent higher risk of dying of cancer.

The findings appear in today's Archives of Internal Medicine.

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(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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