Saturated fat not bad for you
Saturated fats aren't bad for you says a new study. (Fotolia)
After years of advice that healthy eating requires a reduction in high-fat-food consumption, with food like butter cream and chocolate deemed the worst offenders, a leading heart scientist has warned that the UK's National Health Service guidelines must be urgently revised. Dr. James DiNicolantonio insists that diets which restrict saturated fat intake do not lower cholesterol, prevent heart disease or aid in lengthening life spans. Dr. DiNicolantonio is so worried about what he brands a misinterpretation of "flawed data" that he as called for a new public health campaign to admit "we got it wrong."
Sugar and carbohydrates are what Dr. DiNicolantonio identifies as the real offenders when it comes to raising cholesterol and fuelling the country's obesity epidemic. He said, "A public health campaign is drastically needed to educate on the harms of a diet high in carbohydrates and sugar. There is no conclusive proof that a low-fat diet has a positive effect on health. Indeed the literature indicates a general lack of any effect, good or bad, from a reduction in fat intake.
A change in recommendation is drastically needed as public health could be at risk. We need a public health campaign as strong as the one we had in the '70s and '80s demonizing saturated fats, to say that we got it wrong." The heart expert points out that the warnings against saturated fats date back to the 1950s when research suggested a like between a high intake of fatty food and deaths from heart disease. But the study's author draw conclusions from six countries but chose to ignore a further 16 which did not bolster his hypothesis.
DiNicolantonio adds, "It seemingly led us down the wrong 'dietary road' for decades to follow. This stemmed from the belief that since saturated fat increase total cholesterol (a flawed theory to begin with) they must increase the risk of heart disease." Robert Gordon University nutrition professor Brian Ratcliffe says, "For the last three decades, accumulating evidence has not provided strong support for the dietary recommendation regarding reducing fat and saturated fat intake. DiNicolantonio does not even touch on the evidence which suggests that low-fat diets (admittedly lower than the current recommendations) have been associated with poor mood and even depression. Many who adhere to dietary dogma have chosen to ignore the uncomfortable facts that do not fit the hypothesis."