While Marisa Tomei's character in My Cousin Vinny may be lamenting social pressures more than anything when she exclaims, "My biological clock is tickin' like this!" scientists believe they have discovered what could be speeding up the biological aging process: red meat.
According to the University of Glasgow's website, researchers studied participants from both poor and affluent communities to see what effects diet had on someone's biological age — what they refer to as "miles on the clock" — as compared to their actual age.
The study's results showed that when participants diets lacked fruits and vegetables, the consumption of red meat accelerated biological aging, most significantly for poor men.
Red meat has gotten a bad rap before when last year the World Health Organization said processed meats like bacon and sausage had nearly the same likelihood of causing cancer as smoking cigarettes. And of course, it's basically a truth universally acknowledged that eating too much red meat can lead to obesity, cardiovascular disease and, point-blank, "early death."
But after University of Glasgow's latest report, some experts worry the health warnings ignore many of the benefits of eating red meat.
"The elementary theory that red meat is to blame is simply speculation and is not based on solid evidence," nutritionist Dr. Carrie Ruxton told the Huffington Post. "Red meat is a valuable source of iron, selenium, B vitamins and vitamin D – all of which would be expected to support normal health."