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Ask Tufts Experts March 2018 Issue

Q. I often read that to help reduce risk of heart disease, I should limit processed meats. Are low-sodium deli sliced turkey breast and uncured turkey pastrami better choices?

A. Alice H. Lichtenstein, DSc, director of Tufts’ HNRCA Cardiovascular Nutrition Laboratory and executive editor of Tufts Health & Nutrition Letter, explains: “The best recommendation we can make at this time is to avoid processed meats. We don’t have enough information to suggest one type is different from another. Consider substituting processed deli meats with sliced roast chicken (either prepared at home or store bought), roasted turkey, tuna salad, broiled fish, hummus or reduced fat cheeses. If you are preparing a sandwich, don’t forget to load on the vegetables and leafy greens, and use whole grain bread. If you are making a salad, you have even more flexibility: add raw and cooked vegetables and fruits, along with some nuts and seeds.”

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