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Saturated fat: no longer the health villain or is it?

Published: December 21, 2018

Butter contains a high percentage of saturated fat
Butter contains a high percentage of saturated fat

For several decades excess dietary fat was thought to be the cause of heart disease and weight gain.

However, over the years research has been able to differentiate between different types of fats and their effect on these two health issues.
Higher intakes of saturated fat have been associated with increased risk of heart disease, while higher intakes of unsaturated fat (particularly polyunsaturated fats) appear to be associated with lower risk of heart disease.
Higher intakes of saturated fat also appear to increase visceral or deep belly fat which appears to be associated with increased risk of heart disease, whereas higher intakes of polyunsaturated fats do not appear to influence belly fat.
Many factors contribute to weight gain, but higher intakes of saturated fat are more likely to result in increased stores of fat around your mid section.
Despite significant research concerning saturated fat consumption and heart disease, a relatively recent meta-analysis of research studies has cast doubt upon the “badness” of saturated fat.
Where does this leave you the consumer? What do you know about saturated fat? What does it look like? Which foods contain saturated fat? And how much is too much?
What do you have to say about this topic? Read on and join the conversation.
For a more detailed understanding of the concepts identified follow the embedded links to other articles on this site.

Related Topics

Diet  Health  Food Choices  Fats 


Whitney, E. & Rady Rolfes, S. (2005). Understanding Nutrition. Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth
Gropper, S.S., Smith, J.L. & Groff, J.L. (2005). Advanced Nutrition and Human Metabolism (4thEd.). Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth.
CSPI May 2012, October 2012, April 2012, July/August 2014, June 2014, April 2015, December 2014, May 2014