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Monday July 22, 2024

Eating too much of red meat may cause health threats

By Muhammad Qasim
June 20, 2024
Representational image of a meat dish. — Unsplash File
Representational image of a meat dish. — Unsplash File

Islamabad:The use of excessive amounts of meat on a regular basis for days that is a common practice in Pakistan during and after Eidul Azha may cause serious health threats to all individuals including healthy ones while it may highly damage certain organs of chronic patients.

According to health experts, the excessive consumption of red meat including both beef and mutton may cause serious health threats. Overeating of red meat may cause hypertension as it contains high amounts of protein. The high amounts of saturated fats in both beef and mutton may gather in blood vessels and make it harder for the heart to pump blood properly. It also causes problems for the brain to receive blood adequately that increases the risks of heart diseases and stroke.

Every year, it is generally observed that the hospitals receive an additional burden of patients including apparently healthy ones on and after Eidul Azha with stomach related serious health threats due to consumption of heavy amounts of meat. The hospitals also receive an extra burden of chronic patients with severe complications mainly because of excessive consumption of heavy and spicy meat dishes regularly on and after Eid. The number of cases of stomach related problems and ulcers also registers a sharp increase after Eidul Azha.

Gastroenterologists say that a number of serious health threats can be avoided by eating meat in moderate quantity on and after Eid and the patients suffering from chronic ailments should eat only a little quantity of meat.

Experts say that overeating of meat may cause mild to moderate and sometimes life threatening problems for the patients suffering from diabetes whose kidneys are not working properly. Such patients should eat only a little quantity of meat to avoid complications. Regular use of meat dishes on and after Eidul Azha for days must be avoided by diabetics.

Experts say that kidneys work to remove excess proteins from the body, and eating too much protein in the shape of red meat may stress them out, leading to kidney damage and even contributing to renal failure in some cases.

According to experts, chronic patients of hepatitis B and C are medically advised not to eat a greater quantity of meat. The chronic patients of hepatitis B and C with ascites, accumulation of protein containing (ascitic) fluid in abdomen, or having history of blood vomiting can eat only up to 40 grams of meat in 24 hours. Experts say that the chronic patients of hepatitis B and C may face severe complications and fall unconscious or have blood vomiting or fits if they consume a heavier quantity of meat. The patients of hepatitis B and C with normal functioning of liver and kidneys can have moderate quantities of meat but they should avoid regular use of meat on Eid days and afterwards.

The patients suffering from peptic or duodenal ulcer should also consume a limited quantity of meat on Eid days to avoid serious complications. Eating excessive amounts of meat may cause heart disease, kidney diseases, osteoporosis (softening of bones), and various types of cancers such as pancreatic cancer, colon cancer and breast cancer have been linked to heavy meat consumption. Studies reveal that people who eat too much meat are 20 per cent more likely to develop cancer if they eat a lot of red meat. Meat may also contain high levels of hormones, which can trigger reproductive problems and early-onset of puberty in children.