This week, as I got ready for bed I happened to be browsing through our local tv channels and came across a program on CNC3 called Taste. I didn’t catch the name of the lady who was making cupcakes assisted by her young daughter. As you know I ran a Kids Can Cook program teaching kids how to cook healthily, implementing nutrition as the key element to growing healthy kids. What caught my attention was that the recipe for the cupcakes and the icing called for Margarine – sponsored by Blue Band. Mentioning that Blue Band margarine has added vitamins A,D & E and that it is great for our eyes.
This has not only bothered me as I can’t imagine how many people have watched the program taking notes for their next grocery run to purchase Blue Band Margarine. But I am stepping forward, writing you today – educating you, giving the facts and the alternatives. I want you to learn the truth about margarine so that you can take better care of yourself. I care about your health and my mission is to get you healthy!
Last year I had a client who suffered from a mild heart attack. He had 85% blockage in one of his coronary arteries. He came to me because he had a gut instinct that his diet must be related to the heart attack and wanted to recover fully after having a stent put in. Guess what type of diet was prescribed to him by his doctor? A heart healthy diet – otherwise known as a low-fat diet.
Butter known as being full fat was a NO NO! Guess what butter substitute was on his list?
You guessed it – MARGARINE!
Margarine is of course, at the top of the list when a low fat diet is prescribed. After all, who would want butter, full of fat and saturated fats at that! At the risk of being politically incorrect, saturated fats are good for you! But margarine …
According to the Free Dictionary:
A fatty solid butter substitute consisting of a blend of hydrogenated vegetable oils mixed with emulsifiers, vitamins, colouring matter, and other ingredients ,
Developed in France when butter was scarce and expensive. Margarine was created in 1870 by a Frenchman from Provence, France — Hippolyte Mège-Mouriez — in response to an offer by the Emperor Louis Napoleon III for the production of a satisfactory inexpensive substitute for butter. To stay solid at room temperature, vegetable oils are hydrogenated, which creates trans fatty acids that can raise LDL, or bad cholesterol.
By the way “I can’t believe its Not Butter” it is a Margarine spread!
5 Secrets that I want you to know About Margarine – “They” Don’t Tell You:
1. Margarine is high in trans fatty acids – The disadvantage of true margarine is the trans fat level. A study done in Boston, at the Harvard School of Public Health showed that trans-fatty acids do increase the risk of heart attack. In fact, the risk of heart attack more than doubled between those who ate the most and those who ate the least foods containing vegetable oil trans-fatty acids. The more solid a margarine is at room temperature, the more trans fat it contains, as much as 3 grams per tablespoon.
2. Margarine actually contributes to heart attacks – Another study done by the Harvard School of Public Health asked people how much margarine they ate. Once the answers were recorded they waited to see what they died from. Amazingly, people who ate as little as three pats of margarine a day had twice the heart-attack rate of those who ate less than a pat a day, far worse than those who ate lard or butter.
3. Margarine increases cholesterol – Not only does margarine increase total cholesterol, it also increases the LDL (the bad cholesterol). If that were not enough, margarine lowers the HDL which is the good cholesterol!
4. Margarine decreases immune response – According to Dr. Mary Enig, author of Know Your Fats
5. Decreases insulin response -Actually the trans fats can increase blood insulin levels, which increases the risk for diabetes.
So if you have been using Margarine all this time, don’t stress! There are other health products that you can replace your margarine with. If it is that you want the same texture and taste of margarine – there is good old Butter! Make sure it’s Grass-fed and unsalted! I use Kerrygold, but if you find another brand that has the grass-fed stamp and unsalted then go for it.
Fats are important in a Healthy diet! Some heart Healthy fats are:
Coconut oil – Avocado – Olive Oil – Nuts – Seeds – Grass-fed ButterHere is a recipe you can enjoy that contains a Heart Healthy Fat: Coconut Butter