People get pretty personal about their meat orders, with “well-done” fans usually receiving the most derision for liking their meat scorched to within an inch of its life and sucking all the flavor out of it. Now there’s even more of a reason to stay on the “medium” side of things: WebMD and other outlets report today that a preliminary study suggests “people who like their steak well-done instead of rare might face a slightly increased risk of high blood pressure.”
The study, of more than 100,000 U.S. adults, found that “compared with fans of rarer meat, [well-done fans] were 15 percent more likely to develop high blood pressure over 12 to 16 years.” Gang Liu, the study’s lead author and a research fellow at the Harvard T.H. Chan School Of Public Health, added general cautions about grilling meat at all, according to Today: “Our findings imply that avoiding the use of open-flame and/or high-temperature cooking methods may help reduce hypertension risk among individuals who consume red meat, chicken, or fish regularly.”
Linda Van Horn, a spokesperson for the American Heart Association, told WebMD that “cooking to the point of ‘charring’ is the main issue… The process produces chemicals that are not normally present in the body.”
Of course, you could also help avoid these various health risks by eating less red meat altogether.