Background: It remains unclear whether red meat consumption is causatively associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk, and few randomized controlled studies have examined the effect of incorporating lean beef into a healthy dietary pattern. Objectives: To evaluate the effects of a Mediterranean (MED) diet (carbohydrate 42%, protein 17%, fat 41%, SFAs 8%, MUFAs 26%, PUFAs 8%) with 14 (MED0.5; 0.5 oz), 71 (MED2.5; 2.5 oz), and 156 (MED5.5; 5.5 oz) g/d/2000 kcal lean beef compared with an average American diet (AAD; carbohydrate 52%, protein 15%, fat 33%, SFAs 12%, MUFAs 13%, PUFAs 8%) on lipid and lipoprotein concentrations, particle number, and size. Methods: This was a multicenter, 4-period controlled feeding, randomized crossover study. Fifty-nine generally healthy males and females (BMI 20-38 kg/m2; age 30-65 y) consumed each diet for 4 wk with a ≥1-wk washout between the diets. Fasting blood samples were collected at baseline and at the end of each 4-wk period. Lipid subfractions were measured by NMR. Results: Compared with the AAD, all 3 MED diets decreased LDL cholesterol (MED0.5: -10.3 mg/dL; 95% CI: -5.4, -15.7 mg/dL; MED2.5: -9.1 mg/dL; 95% CI: -3.9, -14.3 mg/dL; MED5.5: -6.9 mg/dL; 95% CI: -1.7, -12.1 mg/dL; P < 0.0001). All MED diets elicited similar reductions in total LDL particle number compared with baseline (P < 0.005); however, significant decreases only occurred with MED0.5 (-91.2 nmol/L; 95% CI: -31.4, -151.0 nmol/L) and MED2.5 (-85.3 nmol/L; 95% CI: -25.4, -145.2 nmol/L) compared with AAD (P < 0.003). Compared with the AAD, non-HDL cholesterol (P < 0.01) and apoB (P < 0.01) were lower following the 3 MED diets; there were no differences between the MED diets. All diets reduced HDL-cholesterol and HDL particle number from baseline (P < 0.01). Conclusions: Lipid and lipoprotein lowering was not attenuated with the inclusion of lean beef in amounts ≤71 g (2.5 oz)/d as part of a healthy low-saturated-fat Mediterranean-style diet. This study is registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT02723617.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Nutrition and Dietetics