Who isn’t a fan of greasy bacon, juicy steaks, and succulent sausages? Despite how tasty those things are, and some studies seem to suggest they may not be entirely bad for your heart, it may not be the wisest decision to stuff your face full of them.
According to a recent New York Times article, you should be careful about the amount of saturated fat you consume. A study led by Dr. Frank M. Sacks, professor of cardiovascular disease prevention at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, states that the consumption of vegetable oil is still healthier overall.
The reason why it seemed unhealthier in the first place is because people were replacing their saturated fat sources with refined carbohydrates which impacted their risk of cardiovascular disease.
In fact, the results of the study showed that consuming less saturated fat and more polyunsaturated vegetable oil helped to reduce cardiovascular disease by 30%.
Many studies over the years had actually failed to take into account the type of carbohydrates being consumed, and as a result, the results were skewed against the healthier polyunsaturated fats from plants.
Dr Sacks’ general advice based on the research “is pretty straightforward: consume few saturated fats like butter, full-fat dairy, beef and pork fat, and coconut, palm and palm kernel oils and replace them with natural vegetable oils high in polyunsaturates — corn, soybean, safflower, sunflower, peanut, walnut and grapeseed oils.”
Dr. Walter Willett, professor of epidemiology and nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, also suggests that fat from animal sources aren’t as good as they seem.
“[Dairy fat is] not optimal — not nearly as good as plant fats but not quite as bad as other animal fats,” said Dr Willett. “You don’t have to totally abandon cheese, but dairy foods should be limited to one serving every one to three days, not three servings a day.”
With many conflicting studies done over the years about what is good and bad for you, it may be difficult to keep track of what truly is healthy. But you should still think twice before going for another serving of fatty meat when you’re at a buffet.
By Gilbert Wong, Men’s Health Content Producer