For many years we have been told that saturated fat is bad for us and high cholesterol causes heart disease, and this is exactly what I learnt studying nutrition at University. But, it seems some of the research was misplaced and only one side of the story was handed out, however convincing they made it sound, there are too many missing pieces.
Behind the story appears to be the pharmaceutical and the food industry making money schemes. In the meantime, we have been in the dark, trying to figure out why we are still putting on fat, even though we have stopped eating it! Oh, and of course we are still eating trans fats (eg. margarine) and vegetable oils. But, being extra careful of how much coconut, avocado, animal fats from meat, butter and anything full cream we put in our mouth!
Time Magazine recently featured an article on “Ending the War on Fat”…here is a link.
In the article they say new science is revealing that fat isn’t hurting our health. Interesting… is it really new science?
How did we get here?
The story unfolds with Crisco in 1911, a very smart marketing strategy, it was hypothesised that cholesterol is unhealthy, so Crisco, produced from monounsaturated oils, contains no cholesterol was healthy. Proctor and Gamble pushed this strategic marketing and other manufacturers also started using similar oils because it appeared “healthy”, there was reduced fat and cholesterol and it was cheaper. More details on this at link. It was based on a hypothesis, a theory.
Then in the mid-1950’s Dr Ancel Keys published a paper comparing saturated fat intake and heart disease mortality based on 7 countries where higher saturated fat intake equalled to higher rates of heart disease. This was the Mediterranean Diet Theory and it resulted in the American Government recommending that people adopt a Low Fat Diet! for more information check out this link. This was also based on a theory.
Here we are today
With a little more wisdom and experience.
Below is the the author of “The Fat Revolution” Christine Cronau’s Speech at Low Carb Downunder in Melbourne, Australia, addressing this wisdom.
Then, there is the matter of cholesterol, Heart of the Matter | The Cholesterol Myth: Dietary Villains and Cholesterol Drug War, Thursday, 31 October 2013 on ABC 1 (Australia) asked some important questions such as does high cholesterol really increase your risk of heart attacks? Is the role of cholesterol in heart disease really one of the biggest myths in the history of medicine? What if it’s never been proven that saturated fat causes heart disease?
These are just some of the interesting information floating around about saturated fat and cholesterol.
Where to now?
Eat more saturated fat, less trans fat and monounsaturated fat? What about how we combine it with bread, pasta and all the other fulfilling grain products? How are those products affecting our health?