NEW YORK (AP) – So isn't red meat good or bad for you? If the answer is simple.
A team of international researchers recently discredited the world of nutrition by claiming that there was insufficient evidence to tell people to return red or processed meat, apparently contradictory advice from well-known health experts and groups including the American Cancer Society and the American Heart Association.
But researchers have not said whether to eat more meat, or that it is healthy. No new studies have been conducted, and they report no new understanding of the effects of meat on the body. Instead, the papers offer a new approach to providing advice on food and health ̵1; and a critique of how it is done often. and what should be the risks and benefits of any diet is often great.
"People like the bumper sticker guide," says Dr. Walter Willett, a Harvard professor of nutrition led the study tying meat to ill health.  Today health experts are grappling with how solid scientific findings should be obtained before guidance is released, how to address biases that can draw conclusions and whether the satisfaction we can derive from food should be considered. Dietary advice as obesity is becoming a more critical concern to public health, and people are increasingly frustrated with flip-flopping messages.
MEAT TWO WAYS
The paper s reviewed previous studies on red and processed meats and generally corroborated links to cancers, heart disease and other adverse outcomes in health. But they say that the likelihood of any benefit from eating less of them appears small or neglected.
For every 1,000 people, for example, cutting red meat three servings a week has been associated with seven fewer cancer deaths. For some other health measures, such as strokes, the difference is small or nonexistent.
What's more, researchers say there is little doubt that meat is responsible for the variations.
Uncertainty is common in nutrition research. Many studies on food and health are based on the links researchers make between people's health and what they say to eat. But it does not prove one is caused by another. If a thin person loves cereals and eats them almost daily, for example, that does not mean that cereal is the reason they are thin.
Health experts defending the advice to cut meat claim that researchers are applying an unreasonable standard – evaluating the strength of meat studies with a method intended for medical studies, in which a specific dose of the drug can be evaluated under controlled conditions.
In nutrition, they say that it is impossible to carry out studies in which the diet and lifestyle of humans are controlled and monitored for a long time. They said the signal signals they see in nutrition studies are significant, and people should be guided by the best available data.
THE PERSON VS. THE POPULATION
While it is true that there are seven fewer cancer deaths for every 1,000 people who turn to red meat, then it is true that 993 of those people would not see that benefit even if they ate more. some burgers. 19659002] For many public health experts, the potential for seven fewer deaths is worth making a broad recommendation to limit meat. Across an entire population, numbers can add up to many lives saved.
But the question is where to draw the line, and at this point the potential benefit is so small that it is not guaranteed to ask people to change their behavior.  The authors also argue that individuals who are asked to change their behavior should be considered. For those who regularly eat and enjoy meat, avoiding it can be drastic if all they get back is a small reduction in risk, if any.
"Recommendations should take into account the values and preferences of those who truly endure. The consequences," said Bradley Johnston, lead author of the paper, who specializes in research methods.
TILTING THE EVIDENCE
Given the uncertainty of nutrition science, another long-standing concern is the potential for findings skewed by personal belief or financial incentives.
The latest papers are no exception, with critics and supporters each pointing to factors that may influence the position of others. past. He has led a study by the food industry that has challenged guidelines to limit added sugars, which serve the interests of many food companies. That paper was initially said by the authors to independently write a plan for the study. After emails obtained by the Associated Press were presented in the industry team sent "requested changes," the paper corrected to say that the group reviewed and approved the plan. People have long been admonished to limit meat and to feel the need to defend their position.
The back-and-out emphasizes the difficulty in deciding the biases that any researcher is likely to have, given the economic value of the nutrition industry and the firm beliefs that often exist. people about food.
Meat is a particular polar subject, giving animal welfare and its environmental consequences.
That can make people more confused about who or what to believe, or they just focus on the research that supports what they want to believe.
Wherever meat researchers stand, there is a consensus that the nuances of science fiction are often lost in translation. Foods are often labeled as good or bad, even if researchers try to dislike them.
Get red meat. This "limit" advice is often not defined by how much, which can lead people to think that cutting back is good regardless of context. But in poorer countries, red meat can help improve diets. In wealthy countries, Willett says the benefits of cutting back will vary depending on what it replaces, and pizza may not be an improvement.
Still, Willett and others who criticized the papers last week said many Americans who eat red meat for a day or more could benefit from eating less.
There is no consistent recommendation for an acceptable value. Experts by the American Cancer Society say "fewer" serve a week or less. A study by Willett, which also mentioned the impact on the food environment, advised on a one-week limit of service. But most acknowledge that doing a better job of conveying nuances and uncertainties can help prevent uncertainty and confusion.
So WHAT SHOULD YOU SEE? blamed for encouraging people to eat extra pasta and cookies.
In the years since, the rules have focused on saturated fat found in foods such as meat, butter and certain packaged foods, saying it should be limited to 10% of calories
Like of advice around specific dietary changes, health experts are increasingly focusing on the importance of general diets. Some notes focused on a single meal, often with a complicated mix of nutrients, can also distract from a simpler message: Don't eat too much, because eating more calories than burning will get you weight.
"If everyone wants to. Just pay attention to that one, we can solve many problems," said Marion Nestle, a professor of nutrition and nutrition policy at New York University.
This Associated Press series was produced in collaboration with the 1945 Department of Science Education of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. The AP is responsible for all content.