As we FINALLY return to some decent temperatures outside, I thought I would discuss a relevant point I presented this past Friday during my monthly talk at the Center at Punchard.

I presented 18 “Anti-Aging” tips. Some were a bit more serious than others and some actually came down to how we want our food cooked. Yup, how you order your meat cooked can influence your health to a greater degree that you knew.

Meat has been “under fire” lately (pun intended) as a result of some conflicting studies. Some studies are coming out saying simply: “Protein, especially from animal sources, activates two sets of genes that accelerate aging,” says Valter Longo, Ph.D., director of the University of Southern California’s Longevity Institute, whose studies have shown that people with the highest protein intake have the highest risk of cancer and mortality compared with those who eat the least.

Yet, a recent study from my alma mater, Boston University showed a directly link between high-protein intake and lowering blood pressure. “Adults consuming more dietary protein from either plant or animal sources had lower long-term risks of [high blood pressure].”

As we age, high blood pressure becomes an automatic issue as our arteries become stiffer and more resistant to the force of blood coming from the heart.

I realize one study looks at cancer while the other looks at blood pressure, but both at very substantial issues in our lives. Intuitively, one would think a health choice is a healthy choice all around. Not so in this case.
At our house, we tend to me meat eaters, but I am making a conscious effort to move away from red meat – especially if it is NOT grass-fad and more towards fish and chicken. At the end of the day, I have to say:

I have never seen a single study indicating more veggies was bad. I’m certain we never will.

Meanwhile, back to my point about cooking meat…
Char-broiling meats so they have a dark crust can change proteins and amino acids into substances that can alter the dinner’s DNA.

One study found that women who consistently ate meats very well done were 4.6-times more likely to have breast cancer (compared to those who ate meats cooked medium or rate).
NOTE: Adding rosemary extract to precooked ground beef may cut carcinogens (cancer causing compounds) from forming during grilling by up to 80%.

I don’t know a LOT of people who prefer their meats well-done. (It is a TERRIBLE thing to do to a good cut of meat!) However, if you are one of those people and you are female: Take heed!

It reminds me of a story I heard about the great Larry Bird. Apparently he was renowned for going into some high-end restaurants in the Boston area and ordering his meat extremely well-done, “Bring me a hockey puck!” he would state.

Yuck! Now we have health evidence to fight against choices like this. 
Spark up the grill, bring out the high-quality meats and veggies and let’s get back to spring!