Research from Harvard from Dr Frank B. Hu, PhD has shown that people like to replace the saturated fat in their diet with unhealthy, processed carbohydrates. This doesn't help at all with reducing coronary heart disease.
Rewind ... what is saturated fat anyways? Most people by this time have heard about saturated fat in the news and probably see it has a terrible, evil food item. Well it is a type of fat that occurs naturally in meat (chicken with skin, beef, etc), butter, lard and dairy items. It is not completely evil, but when consumed in excess it has been shown to lead to increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Now there is another type of fat out there called unsaturated fat. This is kind of the opposite of saturated fat. It is found in plant based oils (olive, corn, soybean, safflower, etc), fish, nuts and beans. This unsaturated fat ends up being a liquid at room temperature. There are two types of unsaturated fats that are naturally found in food items. It has been found to help decrease your risk of cardiovascular disease when consumed on a regular basis.
This research out of Harvard has shown that when saturated fats were replaced with polyunsaturated fats the participants risk of coronary heart disease was lowered by 25%. When the saturated fat was replaced with monounsaturated had a 15% lower risk of coronary heart disease. When saturated fat was replaced with refined, processed carbohydrates there was no positive or negative change with risk of coronary heart disease.
Some healthy recommendations include:
- Replacing butter, hard margarine and lard with canola oil, olive oil or other vegetable oils.
- Replacing potato chips and cookies with peanuts, almonds and olives.
- Replacing white bread cheese sandwiches with whole wheat bread, avocado and chicken breast.