Could the misunderstanding about fat have made the American problem with obesity worse?
That’s the understated implication — or an implication — of the latest version of the medical consensus on fats in the bloodstream, as defined by Frank Hu, head of Harvard’s School of Public Health, in a story by Jane Brody in the NYTimes with a clunky headline.
Experts now realize that efforts to correct past dietary sins that made heart disease and stroke runaway killers have caused the pendulum to swing too far in the wrong direction.
“The mistake made in earlier dietary guidelines was an emphasis on low-fat without emphasizing the quality of carbohydrates, creating the impression that all fats are bad and all carbs are good,” Dr. [Frank] Hu, a professor of nutrition and epidemiology [at Harvard’s School of Public Health], said. “It’s really important to distinguish between healthy fats and bad fats, healthy carbs and bad carbs.”
But half-buried in this thoughtful framing of a complex question remains a fundamental truth. Saturated fat — butter, meat, and cheese — is dangerous to your health. .
To quote Hu — who has led huge studies of this issue — again:
He explained that saturated fat, found in fatty animal foods like meats and dairy products, raises blood levels of cholesterol and is not healthy,
What follows is a discussion of alternatives, and the alternatives are worthy and great in fact, but having written a contrarian story about another misunderstanding of medical research into fats a year ago , may I say I feel vindicated in listening to and focusing on the work of researchers such as Hu and David Katz, of Yale and the journal Childhood Obesity, who continue to warn that saturated fat is not your friend.
No matter how pretty.