Chemical Compounds in the Red Meat Destroy the Heart

Meat is known as a source of high protein, but remains cautious to meat, especially red meat also contains high cholesterol. Moreover, a group of researchers from the U.S. found that red meat contains a chemical compound that can damage the heart if consumed in excess amount.

Initially many experts think saturated fat and processed meats way of presenting thought to contribute to heart problems. Even so, it seems this is not the end of the story.

"The content of cholesterol and saturated fat in red meat is not so high, there are other things that contribute to increased cardiovascular risk," said lead researcher Dr. Stanley Hazen of the Cleveland Clinic as reported by the BBC, Monday (04/08/2013).

Based on experiments on a group of mice and humans known that red meat contains a compound called carnitine. In the intestine, carnitine is digested and broken down into gas. Then when you get to the heart, the gases of fractional carnitine is converted into a compound called TMAO.

From this study the researchers also learned that TMAO is closely associated with the buildup of fatty deposits in blood vessels that can lead to heart disease and death.

Moreover, the bacteria in the gut are known to take carnitine. And if that happens, the balance of bacteria in the intestines is reduced. The bacteria that were not able to break carnitine reduces the risk of heart problems caused by the consumption of red meat increases.

Dr. Hazen said, "The presence of TMAO is often neglected because it seems just a waste product but in fact these compounds significantly affect cholesterol metabolism and eventually cause a buildup of cholesterol."

"These findings also support the idea that reducing consumption of red meat is better for your health," he continued.

Dr. Hazen also added that these findings raise another idea in the form of consumption of probiotic yogurt to restore the balance of bacteria in the gut.