Margarine vs butter debate: both not good for you

Margarine usually tops butter when it comes to heart health, and that has been the medical advice that we’ve served up for decades, but new findings are to trying prove that using margarine can also lead to the same heart disease risk as butter does.

Margarine is made from vegetable oils, and it contains no cholesterol (which is found solely in animal products), while butter is made from animal fat, and has high levels of saturated fat which can put you at risk for coronary heart disease, heart attack or stroke, but margarine may not be that good for you according to an old Australian study that was recently analyzed again by the National Institute of Health in the United States and just published in the British Medical Journal, which results revealed that eating margarine can also lead to the risk of heart disease.

The old study was conducted from 1966 to 1973 and analyzed 458 men aged 30 to 59 who had previously suffered from a heart attack and focusing primarily on one polyunsaturated fat, omega 6, also known as linoleic acid which is found in margarine made from corn, sunflower, safflower, and soybean oil.

The study divided the men in two groups, while one was not given any dietary instructions, the other half was advised to reduce their intake of saturated fatty acids and replace it with polyunsaturated fat intake, which did help them reduce their cholesterol levels, but not the risk of cardiovascular or coronary heart disease.

The reason came from the NIH researchers re-investigation findings that revealed that the body converts polyunsaturated fat such as omega 6 into arachidonic acid, which can “spur inflammation” – and is the leading cause of heart disease.

Now the debate is raging between the scientific community with nutrition experts sticking to their guns saying that the NIH findings do not provide enough evidence to change the current recommendations for a healthy diet, while leaving those who still use margarine scratching their heads and wondering if they should just forget about the spread, just like they did with butter.

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