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Tuesday 21 October 2014

On Trial: Saturated Fat: Proven Villain or Medical Myth?

The Low Carb Diabetic Forum is Here all most welcome to read or join.

Christopher Wenger, DO, FACC
Cardiologist, The Heart Group of LG Health


It has been almost 40 years since the Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs published its initial Dietary Goals for the United States in 1977. That mandate encouraged Americans to decrease consumption of total cholesterol and saturated fat,while increasing carbohydrate content to 55-60% of daily energy (caloric) intake.1  The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reinforced this inherited dietary policy in its 1980 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, and in subsequent iterations.2

In response to these governmental directives to decrease consumption of cholesterol and saturated fat, the majority of Americans shifted their purchasing patterns in hopes of reducing the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). The ever-innovative food industry followed suit by modifying its products to appease the newly “fat-phobic” American public, with a litany of ‘low fat’ and ‘fat free’ products. Our thinking at the time was quite simple—fat is bad for us, thus anything that is devoid of fat must be healthy. This mindset paid little regard to the growing consumption of processed foods  and the artificial ingredients found in the vast majority of them.

This shift raises the concern that if Americans are not eating fat, they must be eating more of something else. And since fat tends to provide food with taste, sugar has quickly become the quintessential ‘fat-free’ additive to bolster palatable taste to new (and quite addicting) heights—with the added benefits of new food textures, longer shelf life, and improved portability.

Since 1971 the incidence of obesity has more than tripled—from 31 million people in 1971 to 111 million people in 2010. Even more sobering is the fact that 68.5% of Americans are currently either overweight or obese, including 31.8% of our children and adolescents.3  Paralleling this trend is our incidence of insulin resistance and diabetes, which has more than quintupled from 4.2 million people in 1970 to 21.1 million people in 2010. This growth shows no sign of slowing, and is predicted to rise to 1 in 3 Americans being diabetic by the year 2050.4.  Looming above all these data is the fact that cardiovascular disease continues to reign as the most common cause of mortality in the United States.

Is it possible that the low-fat dietary directives and subsequent nutritional council recommendations provided to millions of patients for the past 40 years have been . . . wrong?

Read full article here:

Another Cardiologist questions the low fat dietary guidelines.

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