Significance of Diet and Nutrition

Without a doubt, one of the most frustrating aspects about trying to educate people about the significant role that their diet and nutrition plays in their overall health and wellbeing is the amount of myth and misinformation that envelopes the issue. Many people stubbornly cling onto their mistaken and erroneous beliefs as if they are some relic of happier times, and so they delude themselves as to the cold, hard truth which is usually much less pleasant to hear.

For example, many avid meat eaters, when challenged about their excessive consumption of meat will defend and rationalise their lifestyle choice on the basis that at the very least, they are getting plenty of protein in their diet.

However, the problem here is that whilst yes, there can be no denying that meat is indeed high in protein, it typically tends to also be rather high in a number of other items which can oftentimes pose a direct and somewhat severe risk to the health of the person.

In a better attempt to identify the role that excessive meat consumption can play in the development of certain types of health risks, a series of nutritional studies were conducted which identified that meat increases the risk of certain types of cancer quite largely.

One of the most damning facts that was unearthed during the course of these studies was the fact that when meat is cooked and exposed to high temperatures (as will occur when they are fried, grilled or oven baked), a series of chemicals known as heterocyclic amines (HAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are produced.

The reason that the HAs and PAHs are of such grave concern and especial interest is due to the fact these are the same chemicals which are also found in the fuel discharge released from petrol fuelled cars, as well as cigarette smoke. The precise role that these chemicals play in the onset and development of cancer is not entirely clear, and there is no concrete evidence present.

However, with the limited information identified thus far, it is safe to say that there is a real cause for concern. Please note that it is not simple the presence of these chemicals that pose the threat to the meat eater, the fact that there is significantly high levels of saturated fats in them as well gives rise for alarm.

Saturated fats have been already identified as playing a very potentially prominent role in the development of a worrying myriad of health problems such as stroke and cardiovascular complaints.

Therefore, it is strongly recommended that you acquire the majority of your protein source from plant sources such as vegetables and certain types of nuts. A word of caution about the consumption of nuts: some nuts, such as cashew nuts, also happen to be have a very high saturated fat content as well as a high calorie content as well.