“Fat is Back”

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Fat is back. Quite a nice CNN headline:

CNN: Fat is back: New guidelines give vilified nutrient a reprieve

Forbes: Fat Makes A Comeback: Experts Say It’s Time To Stop Limiting Dietary Fats

This comes after an article by a couple of top researchers in a the highly respected scientific journal JAMA. They urge the relevant authorities to remove any restriction on how much dietary fat to eat. Any such restriction is said to be not only useless for improving health, but actually harmful to the public health.

“I think it is crucial for all government agencies to formally state that there is no upper limit on fat,” says one of these top researchers to CNN. Very true. He also says that saturated fat is neutral for heart health. It’s simply not something to worry about.

Here’s the final paragraph of the JAMA article:

The limit on total fat presents an obstacle to sensible change, promoting harmful low-fat foods, undermining attempts to limit intakes of refined starch and added sugar, and discouraging the restaurant and food industry from providing products higher in healthful fats. It is time for the US Department of Agriculture and Department of Health and Human Services to develop the proper signage, public health messages, and other educational efforts to help people understand that limiting total fat does not produce any meaningful health benefits and that increasing healthful fats, including more than 35% of calories, has documented health benefits. Based on the strengths of accumulated new scientific evidence and consistent with the new DGAC report, a restructuring of national nutritional policy is warranted to move away from total fat reduction and toward healthy food choices, including those higher in healthful fats.

Fat is back. Almost all sensible people are starting to understand this. Quite a few also understand that this includes natural old-fashioned saturated fat. Butter is also back.

Do you want to eat more fat – instead of carbs – and experience the benefits? Start here

9 comments

  1. Eric
    I limit my fats to no more than 100% of my calories but aim for 80% on average. This range of fat is very doable!
    Eric

    The What, When, and How much to eat is the detail to work out for yourself with or without consulting medical or nutritional advice.

  2. Dan
    The following quote is from the CNN article.

    "The committee concluded that reducing saturated fat could lower the risk of heart disease if it is replaced with a type of "good" fat known as polyunsaturated fat, found in vegetable oils, such as soybean and corn oil, and fatty fish such as salmon and trout. However, replacing saturated fat with carbohydrates does not seem to reduce heart disease risk."

    Cognitive dissonance, or what gives?

  3. Tom
    That's exactly what I thought Dan. Perhaps they just can't fully let go of the old beliefs. Even subconsciously!
  4. The article on CNN still indicates that saturated fats are to be avoided (at all cost), while the Forbes article seems to be much more in agreement with what I believe to be the Diet Doctor's position on that is.
  5. Dan
    My reading of the CNN report is that I could reduce my risk for heart disease if I reduce my consumption of saturated fat and replace it with soybean and corn oil - the healthy fats! Furthermore, it is important for me to do this rather than replacing the saturated fats with carbohydrates. Fortunately, I am currently reading Good Calories, Bad Calories for the second time and the scales have been removed from my eyes.
  6. Wenchypoo
    Alice Lichtenstein must have died or something--she was the last holdout on the fat thing.

    Did you also notice these two things in the actual JAMA study?

    1. They also mention cholesterol as being "a nutrient to no longer be concerned with"
    2. Their expressed recommendation to diabetics is "to follow (essentially the same) dietary food guidelines that are already in place"--i.e., to keep stuffing their faces with grains, fruits, veggies, and all manner of whole-food carbs.

  7. Christopher
    Did the JAMA study also mention about how they contradict themselves. I think they're still trying to appease the wheat board and countless other numbers of processed food producers. They can't have their cake and eat it as well ;)
  8. Britta
    I wonder if anyone can point me in the direction of recent research on saturated fat and cancer? I have recently had a bit of a cancer scare and most official advice appears to link saturated fat to a number of cancers (I'm specifically thinking about breast cancer). I've been eating LCHF for a while now and am not normally alarmed, but cancer scares kind of bring out the worst in you... anyone?
  9. Dan
    Britta, for a start take a look at Chapter 13 of Good Calories, Bad Calories by Gary Taubes for an overview of research tending to show that cancer cells require insulin to bring them energy in order to continue their malignant reproduction. Apparently in mice, IGF receptors are a virtual necessity for cancer growth. He discusses the hypothesis that chronically high levels of insulin and insulin like growth factor caused by a modern diet keeps cancer cells alive and multiplying despite the body's mechanisms to kill cells that have DNA replication errors (theorized to be the inducing cause of cancer). Hope this gets you started... It isn't exactly a discussion of a connection between saturated fat and cancer as you request, but if these theories and hypothesis are valid then saturated fat would not be the culprit in the cancers that are discussed.

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