I just had one of those confusing scenarios where one study touts something positive about a subject and then I saw another study telling you the same thing is bad. It’s not that unusual to have conflicting studies because there are so many varying factors and qualifiers when it comes to science, but dang, these articles were barely a few lines apart on my RSS feed!

The first story was some positive re-enforcement for red meat lovers. The headline read: “Scientific Proof That Red Meat Makes You Happy”. The study (which actually was only conducted in a population of women) concludes that people who avoid red meat are at an increased risk of clinical depression.

“Even when we took into account the overall healthiness of the women’s diets, as well as other factors such as their socioeconomic status, physical activity levels, smoking, weight and age, the relationship between low red meat intake and mental health remained. “Interestingly, there was no relationship between other forms of protein, such as chicken, pork, fish or plant-based proteins, and mental health. Vegetarianism was not the explanation either.”

Unfortunately the researchers don’t know why this is the case, but perhaps further tests (on broader populations) will reveal the link. It was enough to make me rethink my low intake of red meat, who doesn’t want to happier right? Living in a high paced urban environment like L.A, you really should take care of your mental health as much as your physical.

Ok, so the the second article’s headline read: “Red Meat Is Responsible for One in Ten Early Deaths”. Booo! Takes some of the shine off the whole “happy” thing. The study points out that the processed red meat with additives and nitrates (hot dogs, bacon etc.) is worst than a steak for instance.

“This study provides clear evidence that regular consumption of red meat, especially processed meat, contributes substantially to premature death. On the other hand, choosing more healthful sources of protein in place of red meat can confer significant health benefits by reducing chronic disease morbidity [illness] and mortality.”

The evidence in the Shielding™ wave is all about reactions to fear. When it comes to health issues, it often seems like you can find a study to support your claims if you look hard enough. However, that isn’t to say that I’m a “science denier”, I’m just pointing out how often studies can be conflicting. The health and wellness industry is booming because our anxiety about mortality. The Human Truth™ of the Shielding wave is: “It’s not paranoia if something’s really out to get you.”™ I guess it’s just up to us to arm ourselves with facts and do what feels best for us. In this case, I’m going with: not stressing about having a steak once in a while. If that leads to an earlier death …at least I’ll be “happier”!

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