Bodybuilding and eating meat have always been thought to go together like bread and butter. However, too much meat in your diet can lead to heart disease, kidney disease, osteoporosis, and cancer, according to the American Association for Cancer Research.
For strength athletes, the recommended amount of protein per pound of body weight is generally between 0.7 and 0.8 grams. If you’ve been shooting for a gram of protein per pound of body weight–or more–you’re overdoing it.
Consequences of Eating Too Much Meat
Studies show that people who eat too much meat are 20 percent more likely to develop cancer, especially if they eat a lot of red meat. Pancreatic cancer, in particular, has been linked to heavy meat consumption. Meat also contains lots of saturated fat and cholesterol, which can lead to heart disease.
Processed meats, such as hot dogs, often contain nitrate, a preservative that may become carcinogenic when heated to high temperatures during the cooking process. All meats may form carcinogenic heterocyclic amines, or HCAs, during high-temperature cooking.
Marinating meat in vinegar, or microwaving it before cooking, can help reduce the number of carcinogenic HCAs in meat. However, meat may also contain high levels of hormones, which can trigger reproductive problems and early-onset puberty in children, yikes!
While vegetables aren’t typically known for being a great source of protein, there are some sneaky ones out there that contain a decent amount. Before we dive into the list of high protein vegetables, keep in mind that plant proteins are ‘incomplete’ proteins, meaning they don’t contain all of the essential amino acids. To make sure you get the different types of amino acids you need, make sure to combine these veggies with whole grains.