There’s plenty of confusion when it comes to fat. Recent research suggests that the low-fat diets which doctors and scientists have been promoting for years, are actually not the health panacea we all hoped. Nutrition expert Jonny Bowden, Ph.D., CNS, quoted in a Not Born Yesterday magazine article, explained that butter, grass-fed beef, palm oil, egg yolks and other saturated fats are okay to eat. It’s actually the breads, cereals and potatoes we should worry about.
Bowden is a nationally known expert on health, weight loss and nutrition. “When you look at the data it is very clear: Most of what we’ve been told about saturated fat is simply not so,” he said. “Recent research has shown that there is no connection between saturated fat in the diet and the incidence of heart disease. Instead of saturated fats and cholesterol, most leading experts are now looking at inflammation as a prime mover in the development of heart disease.” Carbohydrates, such as breads, pasta, cereals and rice are converted by our body into sugar. “Sugar raises insulin, which causes inflammation, which is the fundamental cause of heart disease,” Bowden explained.
The article included a list of foods containing saturated fats which are okay to eat:
- Butter: “Butter was never bad to begin with! It was banished from our tables because of our ill-advised fear of saturated fats,” Bowden explained. Many saturated fats were replaced with trans fats which have now been shown to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.
- Grass-fed beef: This premium beef contains anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids and fewer inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids than grain-fed beef. It’s also free of hormones.
- Tropical oils: When we mistakenly reduced saturated fat in our diet, we replaced it with corn, soy and canola oils which brought our omega-6:omega-3 ratio out of balance. “Omega-6s are the building blocks of inflammatory chemicals in our bodies, and we are consuming six to 25 times more of them than we are the anti-inflammatory omega-3s. We should substitute Malaysian palm oil for some of that inflammatory omega-6, which will help right the balance.” Malaysian sustainable palm oil is an ideal oil for cooking because it doesn’t break down at high temperatures. It’s also rich in vitamin E tocotrienols.
Robin Miller is a health and nutrition editor with more than 30 years of industry experience. She researches and writes about the nutritional benefits of palm fruit oil, with the goal of giving readers factual, science-based information that will be useful in their daily lives.