You may lose a few kilos
Red meat is dense in kilojoules Cut it out of your daily diet and you could see a lower number on the scale. “Most portions of meat are more than the actual protein requirement,” says naturopath Dr Sally Warren. “An 85g serving of beef can be around 710 kJ. But a portion of beans can be around 418 kJ and tofu around 295 kJ.”
It may not seem like a huge difference at first, but it can add up over time. A 2015 review article in the Journal of General Internal Medicine reported that people on a vegetarian diet lost more weight than those on a non-vegetarian diet. And vegans shed more weight than people who still ate eggs and dairy products.
You’ll be less acidic
Healthy bodies need a good pH balance. But much of the modern convenience diet today is comprised of acid-forming foods, including red meat. “Red meat produces a high acidic load for the body to absorb and neutralise,” explains Warren. “Plus, high acidity in the body creates the perfect environment for disease. Add stress and poor sleep to the mix and you’ve lowered your resistance to high-mortality illnesses like cancer and diabetes.”
You may feel less bloated
The body digests red meat more slowly than it does other foods, which is why you may feel constipation, abdominal pain, and increased gas after a jumbo steak dinner.
While you may experience some indigestion right after you cut out red meat, it’s mainly the result of eating more healthy, fibre-rich foods. In the long-term, you’ll add healthy bacteria in your gut, which could lower body-wide inflammation and make you feel less bloated to boot. In fact, a 2015 study published in the journal Nutrition Research found that vegetarians had lower rates of inflammation than meat eaters.