Red meat chemical link to heart disease

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by LadyCarol, Apr 8, 2013.

  1. LadyCarol

    LadyCarol Member

    Does this affect any of you ?
    [This Message was Edited on 04/10/2013]
  2. LadyCarol

    LadyCarol Member

    We wouldn't eat anything if we believed all the propaganda & paranoia that's out there, and that includes vegetables.

    The troubling finding about red meat is the link they made concerning L-carnitine.

    L-carnitine is sold as a health supplement so these research findings now open up the whole issue of which supplements are in fact damaging to our health when in fact they are being sold as promoting health.
  3. ameilie73

    ameilie73 Member

    A nutrient abundant in red meat....could raise the risk of heart disease.

    Based on the study of the nutrient l- carnitine found in red meat some dairy products and dietary supplements.

    A diet high in red meat is thought to increase risk of heart disease, although a very recent study has cast doubt on this, ( there is a link on this study) suggesting that only processed meat caused a risk.

    In a series of experiments researchers found evidence that naturakly occuring gut bacteria broke down l- carnitine into a product called trimethylamine - N - oxide TMAO which is known to cause hardening of the arteries a major risk factor to heart disease.

    Overall this study shows some evidence of an association between l- carnitine, but not a direct cause and affect.

    L- carnitine does not have an affect if you stick to the uk daily recommended allowance of 70 g.

    Study was carried out in a cleverland clinic in ohio.

    The headline exaggerated the findings but overall coverage was reported correctly in the study partly carried out in mice.

    The human study researchers gave 77 subjects l- canitine supplement including 26 who were vegan or vegetarian. Some of the meat eaters where given an 8 ounce siloin steak to eat = 180 mg of l- carnitine. Participants were given antibiotics for a week to suppress gut bacteria
    from converting l- carnitine into TMAO. They were then given l - carntine again, had their blood and urine tested before and after 3 weeks of ingesting l - carnitine. And some had faeces tested.

    They tested 2,595 people having heart checks they did this to see if there was a significance beteen heart condition and l- carnitine levels


    meat eaters produced more l- carnitine than vegans or vegetarians.

    Significant association between l- carnitine levels and risk of heart disease shown by high TMAO levels.

    Conclusion - an association link of l - carnitine levels not causal for higher risk of heart disease.

    Some people would therefore not be suitable for this supplement.

    Eat red meat in moderation 70 g recommended daily allowance.

    My conclusion "so much for a summary ;-)


  4. ameilie73

    ameilie73 Member

    Therefore, none of which is my personal opinion on the fact. As i understand the content was regarding the possible affect of l.- carnitine on the heart. And nothing further.

    Thanks for the adobe reader info lady carol


  5. ... I read a similar article recently regarding L-Carnitine and was going to share it on this board and ask what others think...since l-Carnitine is recommended for those of us with ME/ CFS.

    What troubles me is that the article said that it leads to arteriosclerosis, which I'm already prone to because I have two copies of the MTHFR genetic mutation... And of course, arteriosclerosis leads to heart problems, as you mentioned...

    I haven't had a chance to check out your link yet, but I'm sure it probably says the same thing that I read in this other article...

    Thanks for sharing this... It is so important and something we all need to be aware of...

    God bless you!

  6. LadyCarol

    LadyCarol Member

    A few years ago I use to take a L-Carnitine supplement as that was one of the supplements recommended for those of us with ME/CFS as Shel mentioned.

    I found out it aggravated insomnia and I came off L-Carnitine quickly, which is just as well in the light of the research findings now being published.

    I hope those who sell L-Carnitine as a supplement consider either withdrawing this product or adding a warning to the label to inform anyone considering buying this product of a potentially serious health risk.
  7. IanH

    IanH Active Member

    Carnitine is not the villain but when it is converted to TMA and TMNO that could be a problem. It is TMNO that is implicated in atherosclerosi, not carnitine.

    There are two main problems:

    1. People who a eat lot of fish, eg Japanese, Koreans, Thai etc are taking in a lot of TMA and TMNO. They have low levels of atherosclerosis even though they can have high levels of trimethylaminurea.

    2. There are many factors which influence the production of TMA and the conversion to TMNO, not just the bacteria. The effects of antibiotics on TMNO conversion are not well understood. So its not so simple to assume that just because you suppressed/killed some bacteria that convert Carnitine and TMA to TMNO does not mean that this happens under all circumstances or that even when it does, it isn't always leading to a cardiovascular problem.

    These people have basiccaly done two studies, the first related high levels of TMNO with atherosclerosis, their second study has related high carnitine levels (in omnivores) to high levels of TMNO.

    The Asians who eat a lot of fish (and TMNO) do not eat much, often no, red meat. So there is more to find out about the interactions. That is if you eat little red meat and take carnitine supplements, are you at risk? Somehow I doubt it. and most Cardiologists will agree.

    More research needed here.
  8. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    What Jesus ate, except for possibly fish and loaves. Just because these are the only things mentioned in the books in the Bible doesn't mean He didn't eat other things. Back then, life expectancy was so low that I doubt people worried about what they ate. Also, they didn't have all the conflicting research studies adding confusion to the mix.

    I think most people do not believe that eating a lot of red meat is a good idea but I'm not ready to give up the occasional steak. New neighbors are pushing for vegans and gave me a dvd. I do not want to become a vegan and feel they are being a bit pushy. In addition, neither of them exactly appears to be the ideal of health. There are a lot of problems with the fruits and veggies we grow, making it more difficult to eat a healthy diet.

    Thanks for providing info on the latest research. I think it helps us to make informed decisions. Unfortunately, it isn't unusal for a new, conflicting study to come along shortly.

    Love, Mikie
  9. IanH

    IanH Active Member

    11 April 2013 Elsevier
  10. LadyCarol

    LadyCarol Member

    Thanks Ian, that's interesting reading. They say L-Carnitine significantly improves patient outcomes following heart attack.

    The question now is : How does someone avoid a heart attack occurring ?
  11. IanH

    IanH Active Member

    If you look at the risk factors then most heart attacks are prevented by:

    not smoking
    being lean
    eating plenty of vegetables and fruit (avoiding processed and too much red meat)
    getting regular exercise (and sunshine)
    being lucky with the genes (this factor has least, but significant influence)
    have a happy and thankful attitude to life

    If you want to add supplements to help you on your way, it seems that omega-3 (DHA and EPA) and vitamin D (if you cannot get 50ng/ml from the sun) are helpful.

    If you have another illness such as MS or ME then it needs a little more creative thought, particularly about the exercise and the supplements.

    What do you think?
  12. LadyCarol

    LadyCarol Member

    We could add to that list :

    Negatives :

    Overweight or obese
    Central obesity
    Air pollution
    Noise pollution
    Environment pollution
    Blood pressure
    Poor life style choices
    Too strenuous exercise
    High cholesterol/triglycerides
    Too much processed food
    Too much sugar
    Too much saturated fat
    Trans fats
    Some supplements & medications

    Positives :

    Normal/healthy weight
    Exercise (anything helps)
    Flexibility exercise
    Good fats
    Dietary roughage from grains, veg, fruit
    Normal blood pressure
    Clean air
    Low noise environment
    Good life style choices
    Regular health checks
    Some supplements & medications
  13. IanH

    IanH Active Member

    The conclusions are flawed/premature.

    This statement (from the studies paper) is correct:

    "People who regularly eat red meat have an increased colonization of intestinal bacteria that break down the carnitine in red meat into a metabolite that promotes increased cholesterol deposition in the artery wall"

    The key words are:
    "regularly" (in my mind this is = more than five meals per week)
    "red meat" (ie beef or sheep meat or venison, maybe pork) not chicken or turkey
    "increased colonization"
    "carnitine in red meat"
    "cholesterol deposition in arterial wall"

    The conclusion that carnitine causes atherosclerosis is FALSE.

    If you regularly eat red meat and take in carnitine via drinks or supplements you MAY be more likely to make more TMA(N)O and this MAY cause more atherosclerosis. So if you regularly eat red meat and take in carnitine you should review what you do, at least watch the research.

    If you eat red meat occasionally (once or twice per week) and you take in carnitine via drinks or supplements there should be no problem but still watch the research.

    If you don't eat red meat then you should have NO problem at all.

    If you have suffered a heart attack then carnitine supplementation will help you a lot but red meat will not.
    [This Message was Edited on 04/17/2013]
  14. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    If the doc takes those pics of the optic nerve, he or she can tell you whether there are plaque deposits in the blood vessels of the eye. There seems to be a correlation between that and the blood vessels of the heart.

    My blood vessels are clear and my cholesterol test are normal but I do eat red meat. I may go for quite a while in between red meat meals and then, I'll crave a burger or steak.

    Everyone in my family dies of heart attacks if we live long enough. My family on that side is from NE where corn-fed beef was eaten all the time. Don't know whether it's genetic, eating habits or a combination. We also ate a lot of fruit and veggies and I still love them.

    Not being able to work out has been something I hope to correct.

    Love, Mikie