Meat — how much is too much?
Thursday, 24 September · 2 min read

Meat is a rich source of protein, as well as vitamins and minerals, like iron and vitamin B12, that help keep your body healthy. But even though meat is full of nutrients, some are high in saturated fat, which can raise your cholesterol levels.

So how much meat is too much?

That depends on the type you tend to eat.

Some studies show red and processed meats might be linked to bowel cancer. Processed meats can be high in fat and salt — and too much of those can raise your blood pressure.

But red meat is a good source of iron, protein and vitamin B12, so you don’t need to cut it out completely.

Experts say if you regularly eat 90g of red and processed meat per day you should cut down to 70g — about 3 slices of ham (69g) or 1 quarter-pounder beefburger (78g).

Liver products like pâté have lots of vitamin A, which can support your body’s defences. But having too much can eventually affect your bones. If you eat liver pâté once a week or more, you may be getting too much vitamin A.

And like other processed meats, pâté can be high in fat.

You can reduce the amount of fat you get from meat by:

  • sticking to poultry like turkey or chicken, without the skin
  • choosing leaner cuts, like back bacon rather than streaky bacon
  • trimming off excess fat before you cook it
  • grilling rather than frying it
Quote of the day

The more you eat, the less flavour; the less you eat, the more flavour.

Chinese proverb

Quick Quiz
What's the maximum amount of red meat you should eat each day?