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#1 Nature Doesn’t Make Bad Fats

This is the title to a chapter on fats in the new book:  Deep Nutrition by Catherine Shanahan, MD.  She is trained in biochemistry and genetics (Cornell Univ), a family physician and the medical director of the LA Laker's Nutrition Program.

Her book is dedicated to every aspect of health and I plan to write a series of articles about things she has found to be the most important in human nutrition.

I'm starting with fats because I feel it's the most misunderstood topic in the study of human health.

Trying to ferret out the truth about fats is not a job for the weak of heart. (But very important for those with a weak heart!)  Advertisements on the front of products, articles subsidized by the various industries selling us fats and calling them "trans-free" and "organic" and "expeller pressed" bring no actual knowledge to the average consumer. We must turn to lipid scientists to get to the facts. (I know, not very sexy) Lipid scientists have written thousands of articles, volumes of books, and have executed hundreds of studies, all coming to the same conclusion:  man-made-fats-from-vegetable-oils are not only toxic but rank as one of the two main enemies of a healthy body and a long, disease-free life. (The other one is sugar, you might have guessed)

Nature doesn't make bad fats.  Many civilizations through the eons of time and evolution have depended on animal fats for survival. Eskimos living on whale blubber do not get heart disease - or - high cholesterol. You may have been following this "newish" information as we try, try, try to move away from the "cholesterol is bad for you" myth started by Ancel Keys in the 1950s but picked up, happily, by vegetable oil manufacturers because these oils are so cheap and they give a very long shelf life to products. The food industry will be the last place to expect reform unless a law is passed to outlaw the use of these poisonous oils. Yet we have known of their toxicity for decades. (Evidence of this move away from "polyunsaturated fats are good for you" is the cover story of TIME mag a few years back:  "Don't Blame Butter".  Many popular books have followed suit, trying to bust the myth about animal fats:  "Good Calories, Bad Calories" by Gary Taubes, is one of the best-in-class IMO.

What are the bad fats?
canola oil
soy oil
sunflower oil
cottonseed oil
corn oil
grapeseed oil
safflower oil
non-butter spreads (all of them, even "trans-free" spreads)
Good fats:
olive oil
peanut oil
macadamia nut oil
coconut oil
animal fats (lard, tallow, but only from grass-fed animals)
palm oil
any artisanally produced unrefined oil

These lists are a result of decades of testing various fats to see what happens to them when heated.  It doesn't take any heat at all to produce the good fats but a formidable amount of heat and pressure to get oil out of a grapeseed, a soybean, etc. This heat and pressure changes the molecular structure of the oils so that they cannot interact with human cells in a healthy way and instead promote inflammation and therefore just about all of our modern diseases.  As you know from all of the info coming out of science circles - inflammation is the name of the game in terms of what you don't want going on in your body!

I think the shocking revelation to most folks iswhere  we find these oils.  (Hint, IF the thing you're about to purchase has a bar code, it will inevitably contain one or more of those oils, again, b/c they are cheap and promote shelf life for several years. Check out Twinkies shelf life!)

These are the products you should AVOID b/c they contain these oils:
margarine, salad dressings, rice milk, soy milk, soy cheese, soy-based "meat" products, breakfast cereals, granola, roasted nuts (raw are good), french fries, packaged dried fruits (they are coated in veg oil) crackers, chips, cookies, cakes, soft breads, buns, store-bought muffins. And all foods cooked in restaurants, shockingly. (Even very famous chefs in very famous restaurants cook with veg oils.  They say it's just too expensive to use olive oil)  You might find an exception or two in this list but all you have to do is scan the ingredients and see if any of the veg oils listed above appear.

These pro-inflammatory oils are outlawed in most of Europe.  If you pick up a pkg of cookies at Trader Joe's and see that they are produced in France, England, Belgium, Switz, for instance, you will not see these oils listed.  They prefer butter. (who doesn't??)

If you have an interest in the topic of Deep Nutrition, helping to separate fact from fiction on the topic of health and longevity, I do highly recommend Dr Shanahan's book. 

Healthy eating!
Note:  animals currently raised in penned or caged environments, fed "all vegetarian feed" -code words for those foods that are heavily sprayed with Round-up and fumigants, will deliver, in very concentrated form, fats comprised of the toxic food they've been fed.  This is why grass-fed and pastured animals are the only safe meats to eat.  Dr Shanahan believes that if budget is a concern, it's more important to eat grass-fed, pasture raised animals than to buy organic produce b/c the animal fats are so concentrated.  Of course I highly recommend organic produce as well.  Just eat smaller amounts of the more expensive grass fed meat.

ary Anne Robinson, MS Bio-Nutrition
watch my video "WHAT ARE WE REALLY EATING"
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