Real Butter Is Back On The Menu

| August 2, 2016

For decades, we were told that butter was bad for us. Like other saturated fats, it was going to clog up our arteries and give us heart attacks. Our television screens carried endless adverts for look-alike spreads that claimed to be healthy alternatives to butter. Most of us were brainwashed by hearing this dogma repeated day after day. But of course, none of it was true.

Although The Real Diabetes Truth has always maintained that dietary fats have been unfairly demonised and that sugar is far more dangerous, the conventional stance has been slow to change. Despite solid evidence that the low-fat message was wrong all along, the 2015 US Dietary Guidelines – perhaps influenced by Big Food and Big Pharma – once again recommended replacing animal fats, including butter, with non-hydrogenated vegetable oils, as I mentioned here.

Now, though, further studies have shown that butter is not only totally harmless in terms of cardiovascular risk, it is positively beneficial when it comes to diabetes. When researchers from Tufts University, USA, combined the data from nine separate investigations into links between butter consumption and health, they found eating butter did nothing to alter people’s risk of cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, or stroke.1

On the other hand, eating around a tablespoon of butter a day was associated with a four per cent lower risk of type 2 diabetes. While this is a rather modest reduction, another recent study provided much more impressive results. Showing that two fatty acids in butter (called pentadecanoic and heptadecanoic acids) may slash type 2 diabetes risk by more than 40 per cent.2 This is in line with earlier research I reported on here that suggested butter fatty acids could reduce insulin and blood fat levels and help to prevent metabolic syndrome. Meanwhile, other research has linked butter consumption with reduced rates of heart disease and stroke.3

These reassuring findings should dispel any lingering doubts you may still have about butter (and who could blame you after the concerted campaign of misinformation about it). So, butter can be safely put back on the menu – but what are you spreading it on? Could bread made from wheat be a much bigger problem for people with diabetes? More on this in my next blog post.

Wishing you the best of health,

Martin Hum
PhD DHD Nutritionist
for Real Diabetes Truth

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1. Pimpin L, Wu JH, Haskelberg H, Del Gobbo L, Mozaffarian D. Is butter back? A systematic review and meta-analysis of butter consumption and risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and total mortality. PLoS One. 2016; 11(6):e0158118.

2. Yakoob MY, Shi P, Willett WC et al. Circulating biomarkers of dairy fat and risk of incident diabetes mellitus among men and women in the United States in two large prospective cohorts. Circulation. 2016; 133(17):1645-1654.

3. De Oliveira Otto MC, Nettleton JA, Lemaitre RN et al. Biomarkers of dairy fatty acids and risk of cardiovascular disease in the Multi-ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis. J Am Heart Assoc. 2013; 2(4):e000092.

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Category: Diabetes, Diet and Exercise

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