Red meat boosts gut bugs that raise heart disease risk
Red meat gives a boost to gut bugs that are bad news for your arteries. The discovery may explain why eating lots of meat increases the risk of heart disease.
Stanley Hazen at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute in Ohio and colleagues fed mice a diet high in carnitine, a nutrient found in large amounts in red meat and also added to energy drinks. The team found that this increased the incidence of atherosclerosis, a thickening of the artery walls.
However, when the researchers fed the same diet to mice with suppressed gut flora, they saw no increase in atherosclerosis. A similar effect appears to exist in humans. […]
Carnitine has its good side: it transports fuel into mitochondria, a cell’s powerhouses. “A bit like stoking a fire, carnitine shovels fatty acid into the mitochondrial furnace,” says Hazen. As our body makes all of the carnitine it needs, any additional intake – for example, in energy drinks or commercially available carnitine supplements – has no significant benefit. Evidence that increasing carnitine intake gives you more energy is weak, Hazen says.
Meat Heart by ~fizzgig
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