Health Impact News Editor Comments
2014 will undoubtedly be remembered as the year the dietary belief that saturated fats are bad and lead to heart disease began to crumble in the mainstream media.
This “news” of course is not “news” at all for those of us in the alternative media, as we have been saying this for well over a decade now. The research in the scientific literature showing the health benefits of saturated fats in the diet has been around for even longer.
What should be carefully noted in the mainstream media’s reporting on saturated fats, however, is that it is almost exclusively related to dietary advice, and the sale of certain groups of food high in saturated fats, such as butter.
The reason for restricting the change in the saturated fat myths of the past 50 years or so to only dietary advice is most likely due to the fact that processed food companies (such as Big Dairy) can still produce products that take advantage of this shift in consumer trends, as consumers wise up to the fact that when you restrict saturated fats in the diet, you tend to replace them with refined carbohydrates, which are linked to many health problems that have been historically blamed on saturated fats. Undoubtedly, the processed food industry’s answer will be more highly processed saturated fatty foods now.
Where the change in the saturated fat myth is still not applied in the mainstream media is in the lipid theory of heart disease related to cholesterol. This is a holy grail in the pharmaceutical industry that supports a hundred BILLION dollar drug industry to lower people’s cholesterol levels. So the cholesterol myth  will die a hard death. Sadly, it will live on to bring in billions of dollars in pharmaceutical profits for the foreseeable future.
The latest study showing the fallacies of the saturated-fats-are-bad belief system comes from Ohio State University.
Doubling saturated fat in diet does not increase saturated fat in blood
Doubling or even nearly tripling saturated fat in the diet does not drive up total levels of saturated fat in the blood, according to a controlled diet study. However, increasing levels of carbohydrates in the diet during the study promoted a steady increase in the blood of a fatty acid linked to an elevated risk for diabetes and heart disease.
The finding “challenges the conventional wisdom that has demonized saturated fat and extends our knowledge of why dietary saturated fat doesn’t correlate with disease,” said senior author Jeff Volek, a professor of human sciences at Ohio State University.
In the study, participants were fed six three-week diets that progressively increased carbs while simultaneously reducing total fat and saturated fat, keeping calories and protein the same.
The researchers found that total saturated fat in the blood did not increase — and went down in most people — despite being increased in the diet when carbs were reduced.
Read the Full Article here .
Brittanie M. Volk, Laura J. Kunces, Daniel J. Freidenreich, Brian R. Kupchak, Catherine Saenz, Juan C. Artistizabal, Maria Luz Fernandez, Richard S. Bruno, Carl M. Maresh, William J. Kraemer, Stephen D. Phinney, Jeff S. Volek. Effects of Step-Wise Increases in Dietary Carbohydrate on Circulating Saturated Fatty Acids and Palmitoleic Acid in Adults with Metabolic Syndrome. PLoS ONE, 2014; 9 (11): e113605 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0113605 
Recent meta-analyses have found no association between heart disease and dietary saturated fat; however, higher proportions of plasma saturated fatty acids (SFA) predict greater risk for developing type-2 diabetes and heart disease. These observations suggest a disconnect between dietary saturated fat and plasma SFA, but few controlled feeding studies have specifically examined how varying saturated fat intake across a broad range affects circulating SFA levels. Sixteen adults with metabolic syndrome (age 44.9±9.9 yr, BMI 37.9±6.3 kg/m2) were fed six 3-wk diets that progressively increased carbohydrate (from 47 to 346 g/day) with concomitant decreases in total and saturated fat. Despite a distinct increase in saturated fat intake from baseline to the low-carbohydrate diet (46 to 84 g/day), and then a gradual decrease in saturated fat to 32 g/day at the highest carbohydrate phase, there were no significant changes in the proportion of total SFA in any plasma lipid fractions. Whereas plasma saturated fat remained relatively stable, the proportion of palmitoleic acid in plasma triglyceride and cholesteryl ester was significantly and uniformly reduced as carbohydrate intake decreased, and then gradually increased as dietary carbohydrate was reintroduced. The results show that dietary and plasma saturated fat are not related, and that increasing dietary carbohydrate across a range of intakes promotes incremental increases in plasma palmitoleic acid, a biomarker consistently associated with adverse health outcomes.
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