Press Release

Department of Health advice on red meat and processed meat

Meat is an important source of protein, Iron and vitamins. Eating healthy food and being physically active will help to improve health.

The most important goal is to try to eat a balanced diet.

The current Irish Healthy eating guidelines and Food Pyramid provide practical help on the correct amount of nutrients – protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals to maintain good health. Foods that contain the same types of nutrients are grouped together on each of the shelves of the Food Pyramid.  Red Meat, poultry, fish, eggs, beans and nuts are included on the Protein shelf of the pyramid. The advice is

  • Individuals can choose 2 servings a day from this shelf. Go for a variety of choices.  Choose lean meat, trim excess fat and remove skin from poultry. It is better to choose fish twice a week.
  • Limit processed meats such as bacon or ham
  • You do not need large amounts of meat (50 – 75 grams of cooked lean beef is 1 serving)

The Department of Health is already reviewing the Healthy Eating Guidelines and the WHO findings have been sent to the expert group for their consideration.  The new revised Healthy Eating Guidelines will be issued by the end of 2015.

Meanwhile the Food Safety Authority of Ireland has published clear guidance for consumers following the WHO Report which is available here

You can find Department of Health Guidelines on Healthy eating here