A succulent beef burger. How about that for some saturated fat?Several years ago, there was a buzz when numerous studies showed that the long-accepted view on the evils of saturated fat is untrue.

The results received a lot of attention. But it looks like a number of people are blissfully unaware of this development. These people hey still think that saturated fat is terrible. Let’s take a step back and go through the story again. Of course, this is for the sake of those lovely people who have some catching up to do.

Here goes

The narrative we have come to accept for many years is that saturated fat is bad, period.

We have come to fear saturated fat, and for what we think is a good reason. The fat raises cholesterol levels. High cholesterol levels are bad because they lead to heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.

For many of us, running away from saturated fat has meant jumping onto the low-fat and fat-free bandwagons to protect our health.

But this is where things get interesting.

Research has gone on to show a different truth about saturated fats. This truth is far removed from what we have been believing for years.  

Turns out there has never been any conclusive evidence that links saturated fat to heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and other diseases for that matter. Everything we have believed for a long time isn’t necessarily true. It was all based on a hypothesis that was made official without validation.

Here is the proof

Two of the most recent studies to analyze saturated fat are the one undertaken by Temple N.J in 2018 and the large 2015 study by De Souza, et al. The first study showed that reducing saturated fat has an insignificant effect on the risk of heart disease. The risk ratio is approximately 1.6%. The second study highlighted that saturated fat intake has no links to heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, or other death causes.

There have been other studies that support the very same deductions. The big conclusion is this: people who eat less saturated fat are just as likely to die from heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, and other causes as those who eat more of the fat.

Bring out the celebration drinks

Wait up.

Before we bring out the glasses and pop the champagne in celebration of debunking the whole saturated fat saga you have to remember something.   

Just because saturated fat has been cleared of causing some terrible diseases does not automatically make it good for you. At best, the fat does nothing for your health, so why not consume something more beneficial.  Something that will give you a net health benefit. Something like the particularly healthy unsaturated fat.

For instance, polyunsaturated fat and whole grains have actually been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease. Instead of going for saturated fat which will likely do nothing for your health, why not reach out for some fatty fish, avocados, seeds, whole grains, and nuts.

Certainly adding fats in the form of oils is fattening and unhealthy, but naturally fat-rich foods like nuts and seeds have profound cardiovascular benefits.

Joel Fuhrman

Ditch those low-fat and fat-free foods that are mostly loaded with sugar. And definitely stay away from refined carbohydrates which are a real culprit and increase the risk of heart disease.

So the next time someone tells you that saturated fat is going to kill you, do explain that the myth has been debunked. Also, do tell them the kind of food and lifestyle that will help them live a healthy life.  

In the end, that is what really matters — health.

Loved this article? Check out what we wrote up on the good and the bad of coconut oil and the popular canola oil.

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