Eating three portions of dairy and a small serving of unprocessed meat a day cuts the risk of early death by a quarter, according to a major study.
The findings suggest a good diet would include nearly twice as much red meat and three times as much dairy as recommended by health authorities.
Scientists said the results “challenge conventional wisdom' after years of advice to cut down on these ingredients. The authors led by McMaster University in Canada said that people who reduce their intake of meat and dairy simply replace it with processed carbohydrates such as bread and sugar.
It suggested the best diets include three portions of dairy such as two slices of cheese, a small pot of full-fat yoghurt and half a pint of whole milk.
This would be around 25 per cent of daily calorie intake.
The global study which tracked 220,000 people from 52 countries for nine years found that eating higher levels would actually be healthier.