Real Butter for Your Health? — Exposing the Cholesterol Myth
by, S. Steve Dounis July 26, 2014
We have all heard the hype of saturated fat being bad for your health and how it raises your cholesterol levels leading to obesity and heart disease. This has now been debunked. In various scientific studies from around the world, a recent review in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition concluded: “There is no convincing evidence that saturated fat causes heart disease”.
Eating fat does not make you fat. What makes you fat is over indulging in refined carbohydrates (carbs); not to mention lack of exercise. There are good and bad carbs. The good carbs contain fiber and avoid spikes in blood sugar levels because they are absorbed slowly in our systems. These include whole grains, fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts.
The bad carbs are the refined and processed carbohydrates that strip away beneficial fiber. These include white bread, white flour, processed white sugar, white rice and other similar processed foods. Fiber is the part of the food that humans cannot digest. Fiber is essential in pushing out waste through the colon. Fiber in the diet may prevent colon cancer and promote weight control. You can only get fiber by eating plant foods – fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts.
Saturated fats are crucial for cell membrane structure and integrity, especially for growing children. Despite of all the misinformation floating around, cholesterol is needed to maintain intestinal health, brain, and nervous system development in the young. Butter does not lead to weight gain as it is burned quickly for energy rather than stored as fat.
Butter, a natural saturated fat, protects against heart disease, cancer, arthritis, osteoporosis, and aids thyroid health, digestion, asthma, obesity, fertility, and, among the young, growth and development.
Vital nutrients including vitamins A, D, K2, and E, lecithin, iodine, and selenium that help protect the heart are all found in butter from grass-fed cows. The vitamins are essential for the proper development of bone structure and are vital in traditional pre-conception and pregnancey diets.
The short and medium chain fatty acids in butter have powerful anti-tumor properties. Butter from grass fed cows have the most conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) that protects against cancer. Butter also contains large percentages of Oleic and Myristic acids, which have cancer fighting properties.
In the late 1920′s, we were led down the garden path of absurdity when we bought the idea that the benefits of margarine, a man-made chemical, was somehow better for health than real butter. An obscure paper tried to insinuate that saturated fat was the culprit of man’s ills. We now know margarine contains trans fats that are far and away more dangerous than saturated fats could ever be. Scientific evidence shows that from the time margarine was introduced heart problems began to appear. And, how many processed foods contain trans fats?
Butter is one of the most easily absorbed sources of Vitamin A, which is good for eye health as well as the heart. Other trace minerals include chromium, manganese, copper, and zinc. The vitamin K2 helps absorb calcium needed for teeth and bone health. It is the iodine in butter that is good for a healthy thyroid.
The most beneficial butter is made from organic raw milk from grass fed cows. Organic, because there are no antibiotics or growth hormones. Next, second to that is organic butter made from pasteurized milk instead of raw. Last of all is conventionally made butter which is much better than margarine or any other butter substitute. If you notice, the organic butters have a deeper richer yellow color because they contain more beta carotene. Beta carotene converts to vitamin A in the body.
In comparison to coconut oil, a plant saturated fat, butter, in large quantities, has a longer history of human consumption. Coconut oil is much more recent and much of mankind may be better adapted to butter than coconut oil. However, we need both for good health.
Butter, coconut oil, and extra-virgin olive oil are all good fats for pan-frying, grilling and roasting. For deep frying, animal fats only. These are more stable at high temperatures. Coconut oil and butter are ideal for baking; olive oil is good for baking breads. Some bakers use a combination of butter and coconut oil depending on what they are baking. Some use only butter for pies and others may use a combo for cakes and cookies.
Don’t be afraid to use more butter in your diet. Animal fats are good for you. We need cholesterol. After all, our brains are about 90% cholesterol. Our ancestors ate butter, bone marrow, brains, liver, and other organs giving them high concentrations of vital nutrients that kept them healthy.