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Fats That Fight Cholesterol

Fat Can be a Friend or Foe


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  • Interesting comment, Sassafras88. I know that my old man had AT LEAST 3 heart attacks (including one MASSIVE one he probably only survived because he was IN HOSPITAL) and all he ate was that "heart healthy" (NOT) $HIT BECEL. I REFUSE to eat margarine (its ONLY a STEP away FROM PLASTIC). I also have a sister in law who is an RN and she says the same thing butter is healthier for you (all things in moderation).
    Saturated fat is not unhealthy. Trans fats may be but to say that all saturated fats are is just plain ignorance.
    That is to keep within the Heart Assoc. guidelines, which are not changed for a long time now.
  • CAROSWEE - the article says to limit your CHOLESTEROL to 300 milligams daily, not the total fat intake.
    There is a gross contradiction in this article. The beginning says to limit fats to under 300 milligrams daily, while the end of the article says to keep fats between 45-65 grams daily.
    The FIRST figure amounts to only .3 grams, so something is WAY off here.
  • OMG, you can find ANY type of "diet" in these comments--vegan, vegetarian, grain-free, dairy-free, meat eaters, etc., etc., etc.

    You can also find articles, studies, etc. to support any of these arguments, too. This is one area of nutrition that will always cause controversy and questions.

    What works best for lowering cholesterol is to exercise and lower your fat intake regardless of what your diet choices are. You do need some fat in your diet, but some fats are healthier than others (e.g., Omega-3's). Nicole is right about one thing for sure--you should limit your daily calorie intake from fats to no more than 30%.

    this is one of few articles in spark that is so vague that is is useless. It would serve better to list the healthy oils and the ones that are not
  • This article was written by a vegetarian. That takes a lot of the trust out of this article.

    I will agree with the many other comments that this contains very outdated information.
  • There is so much conflicting information out there, and this article seems to review outdated information. The latest, and what makes sense to me, is that omega-6's, found in many grains, cause us to retain LDL cholesterol, whereas omega-3's counter that. I have started taking only omega-3, and limiting my grains, and will have my cholesterol tested in three months to see if there is any change.

    Please folks, let's not make this personal. Saying "that's what they teach you dietitians " places all dieticians in a single misinformed group; that's just unfair and inherently inaccurate.
  • Bad article, numerous mistakes.
  • Unfortunately for all of us, no one has incontrovertible proof of what works and what doesn't when it comes to dietary fat. Even if you eat a very low fat diet you can still have high cholesterol levels. SInce the body makes most of its own cholesterol outside of dietary sources there is certainly some other mechanism at work here. I find the recommendations in this article spurious at best.

    As with most nutritional "advice" I believe the safest course is always to look at our physical evolution and choose foods that we were "designed" to thrive on. Grains in large quantities, for instance, are a relatively late addition to human consumption. Back in our long formative period we would have eaten them rather sparingly. It was only when we learned how to plant and cultivate them that we began using them as a staple of the human diet. Fat from the full range of sources would seem to be the safest course to take, just in limited quantites relative to the other foods we eat. Balance is the key.

    And finally, I believe it's always preferable to eat nature-made foods before eating man-made. Butter wins over margarine every time. Hunter-gatherers FTW!
    I just find it depressing that all these foods she says to limit or avoid:

    bacon, bacon grease, beef, butter, cheese, cocoa butter, coconut, coconut milk, coconut oil, cream, cream cheese, ice cream, lard, palm kernel oil, palm oil, pork, poultry, sour cream, and whole milk.

    All these foods contain GOOD nutrients and good fatty acids. And they taste good. Very very sad. No beef, pork or chicken. The vegetarian bias here is very obvious, and the " the low-fat and fat-free craze of the nineties" she mentions is obviously still in affect here.
  • The fact that we produce about 80% of our cholesterol is true. Here is another fact,
    if you consume fiber with each meal, cholesterol from food absorption is decreased to about 30-35%.
    What you don[t learn in Home Ed is that for all the cholesterol absorbed through digestion, the body makes an equal amount. If you eat a high cholesterol food one day then abstain the next 2-3 days, the body mechanism continues producing the higher level of its own cholesterol until it receives the signal that there is little or none coming in.
    Cholesterol is a tricky nutrient, so eating a consistent diet of lean foods, fiber containing fruits, vegetables and complex carbohydrate grains is the best way to keep the level down and impress your primary care.
    I'm in total disagreement with the author on saturated fats. Many nutrients essential to health, especially HEART health, are found in animal fats.

    The author is also ignorant of fats in general. No source of fat is entirely saturated, entirely mono-unsaturated or entirely polyunsaturated. Only the balance of them changes from source to source. To concentrate on just a few fat sources because they are high in mono-unsaturated fats is to limit the variety of things you eat and therefore reduce your nutrient intake. I thought reducing nutrient intake wasn't a good thing. Just like it is best to eat a variety of vegetables, it's also best to eat a variety of fat sources from coconut oil, to olive oil, to fish oils, to lard, to poultry fat, to beef fat. and butter.

    By bashing saturated fats and telling people to avoid many animals sources of saturated fat people would also be shunning good sources of her precious mono-unsaturated fat. Beef tallow is about 40% mono-unsaturated. Lard is about 50%, FIFTY, mono-unsaturated. That puts lard on par with chicken fat, but no, lard is "bad", despite being the second richest food source of Vitamin D out there. Oh look, Vitamin D is good for the heart.

    When by saying that saturated fats are bad for your heart you end up limiting people's sources of heart healthy nutrients you know you've got something wrong.

    It has never been proved that saturated fat and cholesterol cause heart disease. From the very first, decades ago, the first studies linking saturated fat and cholesterol to heart disease were falsified. The fats they used in the study that were indicated in contributing to heart disease were vegetable oils, but they were labeled as animals fats. The first population study that "proved" countries with a higher saturated fat and cholesterol intake had higher rates of heart disease were falsely interpreted, countries that did not prove the correlation were left out of the study.
    No pork, no beef, no poultry, hmmmm. Is there a vegetarian bias here. Whereas I agree with the gist of the article about the importance of eating fats in the diet, the placement of an entire category of saturated fat under the unhealthy fats category is misleading. There are essential fatty acids that can only be obtained from certain foods we eat - our body does not make them, so while you're article is on the right track, it's incomplete. Medium chain fatty acids are a good choice for people who don't have a gall bladder for example. Coconut is an excellent choice for medium chain fatty acids. Eliminating saturated fats in the diet as your article implies is not up to date information.

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