Heart Disease: Get Your Fats Straight

Clearly we haven’t benefited from the advice to eat less saturated fat. As obesity rates have more than doubled since the ‘Low-Fat’ recommendations were introduced, and recent evidence suggests that nearly 70% of baby-boomers are overweight.

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So, why is the majority of the population still trying to eat less fat?

Because it’s been hammered into our heads for the last 50 years that saturated fat causes heart disease!  We’ve all been brain washed into think a big slab of butter-coated red meat is what clogs up our arteries, regardless of what the evidence suggests:

A 2009 review analyzing research from 21 studies including saturated fat intake from a total of 350,000 people found no association with heart disease.

Sadly, it shouldn’t have even come this, as the original research demonizing saturated fat, and sending us on a trip to low-fat failure, was based on fabricated evidence by a scientist named Ancel Keys.  Who, in 1953, provided research results that compared dietary fat intake with heart disease in 6 countries, and ultimately concluded that:

  • Americans ate the most fat and had the highest rate of death from heart disease
  • Japanese ate the least fat and had the lowest rate of death from heart disease

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Clearly, Ancel was trying to make a name for himself, as it was conveniently left out that he originally collected data from 22 countries!  And when all countries were analyzed, it was clear that saturated fat and heart disease were not even close to being correlated:

Finland and Mexico ate similar amounts of fat, yet the death rate from heart disease was 24 TIMES higher in Finland!

Not surprisingly, similar country comparison research has been done since Keys falsified study, and the results are the same.  For instance, in 1998 researchers in the journal Nutrition  looked at the average intake of saturated fat in 41 European countries, and produced the following results:

Cardiovascular deaths (highest in red):

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Fat intake (highest in red):

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Not only proving that Ancel was wrong, but showing that the opposite is true.  As countries with the highest saturated fat intakes (like Switzerland, Belgium, & France) have some of the lowest death rates from cardiovascular disease, and those with the lowest (like Georgia and Azerbaijan) have some of the highest.  And other studies have brought about similar conclusions:

Japan and Israel have nearly doubled their intake of animal fat since the end of WWII, yet heart disease has fallen consistently.

In other words, there’s no reason to fear saturated fat; as it has NO CONNECTION with heart disease.

Or as best-selling author and nutrition expert, Johnny Bowden puts it:

“Low-fat is the flat-earth theory of human nutrition”

Stay Lean!
Coach Mike