Skip to content
Skip to content

Does eating red meat cause inflammation?


Hello and thank you for submitting your question!

Yes, research has shown red and processed meats cause inflammation in the body (1, 2). However, that doesn't mean you have to avoid red and processed meats! Inflammation is a natural response from our immune system to help protect us, but inflammation can be harmful when it continues for a long time and becomes chronic (2). A balanced eating pattern rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and fish can help reduce inflammation and also improve our mood, energy, and overall quality of life (2, 3). 

There are many ways that can also help reduce inflammation other than food. Check out more tips on our Lifestyle pages :

Hope this helps!



Anna Ng, RD 


  1. Montonen J, Boeing H, Fritsche A, Schleicher E, Joost HG, Schulze MB, Steffen A, Pischon T. Consumption of red meat and whole-grain bread in relation to biomarkers of obesity, inflammation, glucose metabolism and oxidative stress. European journal of nutrition. 2013;52(1):337–345.

  2. "5 Foods that can cause inflammation." Cleveland Clinic. Updated June 15, 2020. Accessed December 20, 2020.

  3. "Foods that Fight Inflammation." Harvard Health Publishing. Updated August 29, 2020. Accessed December 20, 2020.

Jennifer Weissman headshot
Jennifer WeissmanRegistered Dietitian

“Funded by USDA SNAP, an equal opportunity provider and employer. Visit for healthy tips.”