Skip to main content
  1. Health and Nutrition News

  2. Apr 9, 2013

Researchers Discover New Way Meat Causes Heart Disease

People who eat meat produce more artery-clogging intestinal byproducts than people who follow vegan and vegetarian diets, according to a new study from the Cleveland Clinic. Researchers followed 2,595 heart patients and categorized them as omnivores, vegans, or vegetarians and found that those who consumed the most carnitine, present in animal products, increased their risk for heart disease by producing more artery-clogging metabolites. This study lends insight into other components of meat products, besides saturated fat and cholesterol, that may elevate the risk of heart disease.


  1. Koeth RA, Wang Z, Levison BS, et al. Intestinal microbiota metabolism of L-carnitine, a nutrient in red meat, promotes atherosclerosis. Nat Med. Published online April 7, 2013.

More on Heart Disease

Interested in this topic?

Learn more and earn free CME credits on!