How “good” fats could be hurting your heart

I’ve got some super exciting news. Well, maybe it won’t come as “news” to you.

But it’s a major study that I couldn’t wait to share with you. It’s the perfect comeback for all those tragically misinformed people who think you’re crazy for choosing steak and eggs over Special K.

Go ahead and tell them to read it and weep: A review of 72 different clinical studies—featuring data from more than half a million people—found that saturated fatty acids do not increase your risk of coronary disease. Which means there is no evidence to support saturated fat restriction for heart disease prevention.

Let me just repeat that: You don’t need to restrict saturated fats. Funny, though—I didn’t hear anything about it on the news. Which is infuriating—because these findings are important.

Because data showed that while saturated fat doesn’t affect your heart risk, trans fats do. In fact, people with the highest intakes of trans fats suffered a 16 percent higher heart risk than those with the lowest intakes.

This is yet another fact that doctors (like me) who understand nutritional medicine have known for decades. Yet the government is only starting to act on it now. So why anyone would rely on so-called health officials for sound health advice is a mystery to me. The two simply can’t coexist. Those pesky lobbyists keep getting in the way.

But I digress. Let’s get back to this new analysis.

These researchers also compared the benefits of higher intake of other types of fats. And they found that monounsaturated fats (from sources like avocado and macadamia nut oil) lowered heart risk. Omega-3 polyunsaturated fats from sources like fish oil were linked to lower heart risk, too.

Meanwhile, omega-6 polyunsaturated fats increased coronary risk. That’s precisely why I’m always telling you to avoid all those vegetable and seed oils from soybean, cottonseed, grapeseed, and the like. (They’re packed with omega-6s—and they’re everywhere.) And never supplement with any essential fatty acid combination formula that includes omega-6s. (What you need is 3,000 mg of omega-3s—in the form of DHA or EPA—per day.)

As you can see, these researchers were incredibly thorough in their analysis. They looked at the effects of numerous types of fats and fatty acids.  So if this doesn’t drive home the fact that the existing dietary guidelines are garbage, I really don’t know what does.

Yet, even now, the so-called “experts” are still urging you to focus on your total fat intake from saturated and unsaturated sources. As far as they’re concerned, all saturated fat is bad— while all unsaturated fat is good.

Of course, this is typical of the broad stroke approach that governmental agencies apply to food. They like to demonize one thing—usually the wrong thing—while deifying another. And the consequences have been completely disastrous.

Don’t get me wrong. I understand the desire to keep the rules simple when it comes to food.

But this approach only works if you’re looking at the big picture. Something that the people in charge of this country’s nutritional guidelines obviously aren’t very good at doing.

At the end of the day, facts are facts. And there’s been enough research dispelling the saturated fat myth. So I think it’s time we closed the book on it, once and for all. And set our sights on the real enemy in our midst.

Saturated fat isn’t the bogeyman that’s going to kill you. Sugar is. And that’s the plain and simple truth.



“Association of Dietary, Circulating, and Supplement Fatty Acids With Coronary Risk: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis.” Ann Intern Med. 2014 Mar 18;160(6).