Tag Archives: butter

The Skinny on Fat [Show Notes]

GMOs, Eating Disorders, ObesityIn this weeks episode we talked about dietary fat. Is a low-fat diet really as healthy as we are led to believe? Are all fats bad? What types of fats should we avoid? What types of fats are the healthiest?

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In this episode we covered:

0:00 – Introduction
3:40 – Saturated Fat: Coconut Oil
5:28 – What are Saturated Fatty Acids?
5:45 – What are Unsaturated Fatty Acids?
6:05 – Is Saturated Fat Unhealthy?
6:45 – Short-chain, Medium-chain, Long-chain, and Very long-chain Fatty Acids
7:40 – Caller Question – What is healthier butter or margarine?
12:40 – Short-chain, Medium-chain, Long-chain, and Very long-chain Fatty Acids
17:54 – Sources of Saturated Fat
18:54 – What oils are the healthiest?
19:20 – What is the role of fatty acids?
19:55 – What are Trans-Fats, Partially Hydrogenated Oils?
20:52 – Caller Question – What is healthier skim milk or whole milk?
27:40 – What are some sources of trans-fats?
28:25 – What are some other names for trans-fats?
29:17 – Why are trans-fats used?
30:05 – Food labelling – Low Fat, Fat Free, Reduced Fat, Light, Lean, Extra Lean
33:30 – How to choose healthy milk
36:40 – What are the best cooking oils?

Links we discussed:

The Benefits of Butter
CLA and Trans-fats
Cooking Oils, Explained.
The Disadvantages of Low Fat Milk.
How to Choose Healthy Milk.
Free Lifestyle Handbook.
The Best Source for Fermented Cod Liver Oil.

Show Summary

Saturated fat is fat that consists of triglycerides containing only saturated fatty acids. (A triglyceride is a combination of a glycerol and 3 fatty acids) Saturated fatty acids are chains of carbon atoms that are fully “saturated” with hydrogen. They have no double bonds. Unsaturated fat consists of fatty acids that do have double bonds.

So, Fatty acids that have double bonds are known as unsaturated. Fatty acids without double bonds are known as saturated. For many years we were told that saturated fats were dangerous and that fats like canola oil were good for us….wrong!

Fatty Acids also differ in length.

Fatty acid chains differ by length as well as in saturation.  This is important because most of us have been told that saturated fat is bad and that unsaturated fat is good.  In fact, the length of the fat may be even more important.

Length is categorized as short to very long

  • Short Chain fatty acids (SCFA) are (always saturated) fatty acids tails of fewer than six carbons. Found mostly in butter fat from cows or goats. (microbes good for immune systems)
  • (MCFA) are fatty acids tails of 6–12 carbons, which can form medium-chain triglycerides. Found in coconut fat
     
  • Long-chain fatty acids (LCFA) (Saturated, monounsaturated or polyunsaturated) are fatty acids with tails 13 to 21carbons.  Found in beef, olive oil, black current oil
  • Very long chain fatty acids (VLCFA) (Highly unsaturated) are fatty acids with tails longer than 22 carbons. Found in Fish oil (EPA, DHA) very important in the functioning of the nervous system.

Short and Medium chain fatty acids do not store as fat in human beings, whereas, long and very long chain fatty acids do.

Unlike other fatty acids, MCFA are absorbed directly from the intestines into the portal vein and sent straight to the liver where they are, for the most part, burned as fuel much like a carbohydrate. In this respect they act more like carbohydrates than like fats.2

Other fats require pancreatic enzymes to break them into smaller units. They are then absorbed into the intestinal wall and packaged into bundles of fat and protein called lipoproteins. These lipoproteins are carried by the lymphatic system, bypassing the liver, and then dumped into the bloodstream, where they are circulated throughout the body. As they circulate in the blood, their fatty components are distributed to all the tissues of the body. The lipoproteins get smaller and smaller, until there is little left of them. At this time they are picked up by the liver, broken apart, and used to produce energy or, if needed, repackaged into other lipoproteins and sent back into the bloodstream to be distributed throughout the body. Cholesterol, saturated fat, monounsaturated fat, and polyunsaturated fat are all packaged together into lipoproteins and carried throughout the body in this way.

In contrast, medium and short-chain fatty acids are not packaged into lipoproteins but go straight to the liver where they are converted into energy. Ordinarily they are not stored to any significant degree as body fat.

Short and Medium-chain fatty acids produce energy. Other dietary fats produce body fat.

Various fats contain different proportions of saturated and unsaturated fat. Examples of foods containing a high proportion of saturated fat include animal fats such as cream, cheese, butter, and ghee; suet, tallow, lard, and fatty meats; as well as certain vegetable products such as coconut oil, cottonseed oil, palm kernel oil, chocolate, and many prepared foods. Although cottonseed oil is high in saturated fat, it should be avoided due to the fact that it is genetically modified.

In particular, heart and skeletal muscle prefer fatty acids. The brain cannot use fatty acids as a source of fuel; it relies on glucose or ketone bodies.

Trans fats

Trans fats (or trans fatty acids) are created in an industrial process that adds hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to make them more solid.  Another name for trans fats is “partially hydrogenated oils.”  Look for them on the ingredient list on food packages.

Trans fats raise your bad (LDL) cholesterol levels and lower your good (HDL) cholesterol levels.  Eating trans fats increases your risk of developing heart disease and stroke.  It’s also associated with a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Trans fats can be found in many foods – but especially in fried foods like French fries and doughnuts, and baked goods including pastries, pie crusts, biscuits, pizza dough, cookies, crackers, and stick margarines and shortenings.  You can determine the amount of trans fats in a particular packaged food by looking at the Nutrition Facts panel.  You can also spot trans fats by reading ingredient lists and looking for the ingredients referred to as “partially hydrogenated oils.”

Small amounts of trans fats occur naturally in some meat and dairy products, including beef, lamb and butterfat.  It isn’t clear; though, whether these naturally occurring trans fats have the same bad effects on cholesterol levels as trans fats that have been industrially manufactured.

Companies like using trans fats in their foods because they’re easy to use, inexpensive to produce and last a long time.  Trans fats give foods a desirable taste and texture.  Many restaurants and fast-food outlets use trans fats to deep-fry foods because oils with trans fats can be used many times in commercial fryers.

What exactly does Low Fat Mean?

Fat Free –  Less than 0.5g of fat per serving

XX% Fat Free – Must also meet the low fat claim (below)

Low Fat – 3g or less per serving; or 3g per 100g for a meal or main dish, and 30% of total calories or less

Reduced Fat  – 25% less fat than food it is being compared to

Low Saturated Fat – 1g or less and 15% or less of calories from saturated fat

Light/Lite – 50% less fat or one-third fewer calories than the regular product

Lean – Less than 10g of fat, 4.5g of saturated fat and 95mg of cholesterol per 100g of meat, poultry or seafood

Extra Lean – Less than 5g of fat, 2g of saturated fat and 95mg of cholesterol per serving and per 100g of meat, poultry or seafood.

Low Cholesterol – 20mg or less per serving and 2g or less saturated fat per serving

Cholesterol Free – Less than 2mg per serving and 2g or less saturated fat per serving

Less Cholesterol – 25% or less than the food it is being compared to, and 2g or less saturated fat per serving

Low Calorie – 40 calories or less per serving

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Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

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Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible. Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. http://edpro.wpengine.com’

The Benefits of Butter

 

“I’ve been treating eating disorders (ED’s) and obesity for nearly 25 years and have always had good outcomes.  My rate of success improved dramatically, however, when I discovered the critical role that processed food plays in causing as well as in preventing recovery from Anorexia, Bulimia, Bulimarexia, (a combination of the two) Binge Eating Disorder (BED,) Emotional Eating and Obesity. To this end, I find it of great importance to provide both my patients and readers with relevant nutrition information to aid in their recovery. You can view all my Nutrition, Fitness, and Health articles here.

For decades, we have been told that saturated fats are unhealthy, the root cause of the epidemic of heart disease, obesity and high cholesterol that is plaguing our society. I can’t help but to wonder where this theory originated from and if there is really any truth to it? Can something my own grandparents regularly incorporated into their diet really be the cause of many of the health issues that are afflicting our nation?

When it was first announced that saturated fats were unhealthy, the soybean industry saw an opportunity for profit. They spent millions of dollars on an anti-saturated fat campaign, which resulted in butter and other saturated fats being viewed as “evil villains” that had no place in our diet. We were convinced that in order to attain optimal health, we should stop consuming butter and start consuming (often soy-based) margarine. The soybean industry wasn’t the only industry to profit off of this campaign, producers of America’s other main crops (cotton and corn) also benefited, as the majority of margarine is primarily composed of cottonseed, corn and soy oil.

The Weston A Price Foundation has done extensive research about these claims that saturated fats, like butter, have a negative effect on our health. Their research demonstrated that butter actually contains ingredients that PREVENT heart disease. They found that margarine INCREASES the risk of heart disease, due to the free-radicals that are generated during the process of producing margarine. Research by the Medical Research Council demonstrated that men who incorporate butter into their diets ran half the risk of developing heart disease than those who used margarine. Their research also demonstrated that butter does not cause weight gain. To the contrary, margarine is much more likely to result in weight gain because it lacks so many important nutrients, resulting in “cravings and bingeing.”

Butter, especially grassfed butter, is an excellent source of fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K2. It is also somewhat unique in the fact that it contains all of these vitamins co-factors that are required for our bodies to experience optimal benefit. Depending on the source of the butter, the concentration of these vitamins will vary. As a general rule, the more yellow the butter, the more concentrated the nutrients. Also, grassfed butter will typically be higher in nutrient content in the Spring and Autumn when the grass is greenest.

Vitamin A (or retinol) from butter is more easily absorbed by the body than from any other dietary source. Vitamin A is a ‘catalyst’, in that it helps our body to absorb other minerals. Since it is a fairly stable vitamin, little to no damage is done during the pasteurization of butter. Some of the main health benefits of vitamin A include:

  • it strengthens the immune system
  • it promotes good eye health
  • it maintains healthy bones and teeth
  • it prevents urinary stones
  • it reduces the risk of developing cancer
  • it improves the health of our skin
  • it improves reproductive health

Vitamin D is essential to obtaining maximum health. Much like Vitamin A, it serves as a catalyst in the absorption of minerals. Some of the health benefits of Vitamin D include:

  • it improves the health of our skin
  • it strengthens the immune system
  • it maintains healthy bones and teeth
  • it prevents osteomalacia and rickets
  • it improves cardiovascular health
  • it protects against osteoporosis and arthritis
  • it improves mental health
  • assists many bodily processes, such as regulating blood pressure, reducing muscle spasms, helps in cell formation, regulating insulin secretion

‘Activator X’, which is now known to be vitamin K2 was discovered by Dr Weston A Price in 1945. Grainfed butter is only a moderate source of this vitamin, grassfed butter contains up to 50 times more vitamin K2. This is because grass and other leafy greens contain vitamin K1, which is converted into vitamin K2 during the fermentation process that occurs in the cows stomach. Corn-based feed contains little vitamin K1 (0.3 µg/100 grams, some leafy greens contain more than 800µg/100 grams). Vitamins A, D and K all work together in our bodies. When we ingest foods containing vitamin A and vitamin D, a signal is sent to our cells to create certain proteins, vitamin K then activates these proteins. Vitamin K2 also plays a major role in:

  • the prevention of tooth decay
  • growth and development
  • reproduction
  • protection against heart disease
  • brain function

Vitamin E has many biological functions, it’s anti-oxidant function is the most well-known. In addition to it’s anti-oxidant content, vitamin e:

  • Promotes heart health
  • Promotes respiratory health
  • Helps with normal PMS symptoms
  • Supports circulation
  • Supports prostate and breast health
  • Is good for your brain
  • May help hot flashes in menopausal women

Butter possesses many other health benefits beyond it’s content of vitamins A, D, E and K2.

  • Butter is a good sources of short and medium chain triglycerides (these are the types of fat that cannot be stored in adipose tissue)
  • Butter contains the medium chain triglyceride, lauric acid. There are only two dietary choices when it comes to lauric acid: small amounts of butter or large amounts of coconut oil
  • Butter contains the short chain triglyceride, butyric acid. This short chain triglyceride is only found in butter
  • Grassfed butter contains a perfect balance of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids
  • Grassfed butter is an excellent source of CLA. It contains 300-500 times more CLA than grainfed butter
  • Butter contains lecithin, which helps the body utilize cholesterol and other components of fat
  • It is an excellent source of many trace minerals, including manganese, zinc, chromium and iodine.

I often make my own butter, using whipping cream from Snowville Creamery. The Snowville Creamery website provides directions on how to make it:

It is best to start with cream at about 55-60 F.

There are many ways to churn butter, but any form of agitation will cause the butter to form. The easiest way is to pour cream into a food processor up to the liquid fill line and run the processor beyond whipped cream until the butter separates from the buttermilk. You can also use a mixer, a hand whisk, or put cream in a jar and shake it.

Once the butter has separated from the buttermilk, pour the butter and milk into a strainer or colander. The milk that pours off of the butter is good to drink or use for cooking.

The butter that is retained in the strainer should be rinsed with cool water and repeatedly kneaded with a wooden spoon until all the milk is expelled and the water runs clear.

The butter can then be placed into a butter mold or bowl. For salted butter, add salt before pressing. Enjoy!

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Like me on Facebook

Twitter @drrenae

Contact Dr Norton by phone 513-205-6543 or by form

Inquire about booking Dr Norton for a speaking engagement

Read About Dr Norton

View video about Dr Norton

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.

© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. This information is intellectual property of Dr J Renae Norton. Reproduction and distribution for educational purposes is permissible.

Please credit ‘© 2012, Dr J Renae Norton. http://edpro.wpengine.com’

Sources:

Why Butter is Better – Weston A Price
The Skinny on Fats – Weston A Price
Why Butter is Better – Mercola
Grass Fed Butter – Choosing a Better Butter
On the Trail of the Elusive X-Factor – Weston A Price
7 Health Benefits of Vitamin A
Benefits of Vitamin E
Health Benefits of Vitamin D