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Animal Protein Linked to Early Death

Eating a diet high in animal protein leads to an earlier death, compared with people who consume less, according to a new study analyzing data from 6,381 American adults aged 50 and older. Participants who ate the most animal protein had a 5-fold increase risk of death related to diabetes. Those younger than 65 who ate the most animal protein had a 74 percent increase risk for death from any cause and a 4-fold increase in death related to cancer, during a follow-up of 18 years. Risks for death were diminished or absent when protein sources were plant-derived.

Levine ME, Suarez JA, Brandhorst S, et al. Low protein intake is associated with a major reduction in IGF-1, cancer, and overall mortality in the 65 and younger but not older population. Cell Metab. 2014; 19:407-417.

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