Updated: Nov 14, 2019
The demonization of saturated fat is alive and well with the low fat dietary recommendations made by the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services in 2010. The government’s dietary guidelines, issued every 5 years, continues to recommend a low fat , high carbohydrate diet, substituting highly inflammatory processed oils such as soybean, corn and cottonseed oils for traditional healthy saturated fats like coconut oil and butter.
Carbohydrates, particularly grains and sugar are well known causes of inflammation, along with processed oils. Inflammation has been determined to be one of the real underlying causes of health problems. Processed soybean, corn and cottonseed oils are usually genetically modified, which adds to their health dangers.
Power of US dietary guidelines
In this country, the government dietary guidelines dictate health policy followed by schools, hospitals physicians and dietitians. This policy affects school lunch programs, hospital foods and the dietary advice given by the majority of healthcare professionals. The influence can be seen in restaurants and grocery store aisles, where low fat foods are lauded as superior to whole fat. These low fat foods are generally loaded with sugar and other processed ingredients to enrich the taste lost when real, whole fat ingredients are removed.
Why saturated fats are essential to health
Saturated fats and organs from pastured animals contain essential fat soluble vitamins A, D and K2, missing for most Americans. Dentist Weston Price established, in his remarkable 10 year study of endemic cultures around the world, that these fat soluble vitamins ensured superior, perfect health for native groups. These groups ate a diet comprised of 30-80% traditional fats. See Vitamins A, D and K2 build healthy bodies, but are missing in modern diets
Americans have proven to be highly deficient in vitamin D, essential for health. The overwhelming need for orthodontia provides evidence that American youth are deficient in all three vitamins. Fat soluble vitamins are essential for the formation of adequate palate size needed for straight teeth formation. See Getting braces for crooked teeth is evidence of our modern day malnutrition
The resulting health epidemic and the evidence against low fat
The replacement of nutrient dense saturated, traditional fats and foods with highly processed, inflammatory vegetable oils, grains and carbohydrates has contributed to a health epidemic in this country. This crisis includes overwhelming rates of heart disease, diabetes, obesity, cancer, auto-immune disorders, psychiatric illnesses and food allergies.
Research overwhelmingly supports that saturated fat, similar to cholesterol, is essential to a healthy diet. Studies that originally blamed saturated fats as problematic failed to separate trans fats from the saturated fats.
How the big “fat” lie began
During the early 1900’s Americans ate pastured butter, lard, chicken and beef fat. Heart disease was virtually nonexistent. In 1921, there was one recorded incidence of heart disease. Cases of heart disease occurred rarely and were related to inflammation caused by infectious agents.
In 1911 Crisco and Mazola oils were developed and massive public advertising campaigns developed to convince Americans to replace their traditional fats with the “modern”, processed oils containing trans fats.
Dr. Ancel Keys in his study cherry picked a few countries to incorrectly show that saturated fats caused heart disease. This widely publicized study contributed to the lipid hypothesis and the dietary recommendations for low saturated fats. In reality, several studies show that Europeans consuming high saturated fats have low heart disease.
Sweden recently changed its dietary guidelines to include more saturated fats. Physicians in England and the U.S. are also speaking out, recommending saturated fat consumption. Wheat Belly author, cardiologist William Davis has done extensive clinical research with his patients, proving that eating saturated fats and meat, while eliminating wheat, grains and sugar reduces heart disease.
Written by Michelle Goldstein, Holistic Health To Go