No one wants to give up bread. And no one says you have to. But, the most recent research points to processed carbohydrates as “deadly”. Contrary to decades of inaccurate reporting, it’s actually the good fats that will prolong your healthy life.
People Think Fat is Bad—But Is it?
We have been programmed to believe that all fats are bad for our health. In truth, all fats are not created equal, nor are they all life-shortening. Yes, trans fats (trans unsaturated fatty acids) are unhealthy. Those are the ones where chemically caused, molecular mutation takes place. That would include vegetable oil, partial- and fully-hydrogenated oil, and shortenings used for deep-frying, among others. These are found in most fast foods, store-bought and even bakery-made cakes, cookies, crackers, bread, and other popular American consumables.
Saturated fats, on the other hand, are good fats. Research published in the August 2017 issue of The Lancet, claimed that people with an approximate saturated fat composition of 35% of their daily diet had a 23% percent lower risk of stroke or early death than those who ate less good fats. That is huge—and not in weight, but in health news.
That’s tough to wrap our brains around after all the “fat-is-bad-for-you” propaganda that’s been drummed into us for years and years.
Participants with a super low intake of saturated fats (somewhere between 3 and 10% of their daily diet) were associated with a higher risk of death. That means that low consumption of good fats is actually detrimental to your health. Time to bring on the sushi, guacamole, hummus, and pistachio nuts! (But maybe not in the same sitting.)
What’s Your Bread and Butter?
Butter has little-to-no protein or fiber benefit, but it offers vitamin K2, omega-3 fatty acid, and saturated fat. Grass-fed butter, as opposed to regular butter, is even healthier because it’s antibiotic- and hormone-free. Butter is better than margarine or any other processed, artificial, or imitation form of its delicious, natural counterpart.
If you’re using grass-fed butter to season or sauté, you are not risking your health; you may even be enhancing it.
Bread, on the other hand, is full of carbohydrates, but the not-so-good kind. That’s because it’s refined and/or processed. Bread can contain added sugar or high fructose corn syrup, which messes with your blood sugar and glucose levels. Simple carbs, like bread and corn, digest easily, but they also make you crash quickly. They screw with your insulin levels, which is eventual cause for type-2 diabetes, weight gain, and also your inability to lose weight.
Carbohydrates found in fruits and vegetables are different because they provide nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and fiber. They are also un-processed.
The Bread Winner? Think Again…
Anyway you slice it, bread is a sugar provider and producer. If this 18-country study showed that an excess of white flour consumption may increase your risk of early death, do you still want to order your burger between buns?
If you said “yup”, you’re not alone. Of the 135,000 involved in the 7-year study, about half of those folks derived 70% of their daily calories from carbohydrates (and not necessarily from the good sources.)
Clearly, education regarding updated, factual, nutrition-based guidelines are lacking—or no one’s listening—or no one cares.
Fat, Sugar; Carbs, Sugar; Sugar, Sugar
Ingestion of pure or added sugar is not an essential for human health. (BTW, added sugar is an actual detriment.) Our bodies produce or derive the sugar we need for energy from the proper and natural foods we eat. And, that is plenty. Anymore, especially chemically derived, and it becomes a serious health danger.
All of the foods we eat, whether plant-or animal-based contain the trio of nutrients we need for existence—protein, carbohydrates, and fat. How much of each we should put on our plates has been up for debate for decades. Unfortunately, our good health may not be always the priority in the information delivered.
Special interest groups such as: the dairy association, the sugar producers, the red meat council, etc. may have an agenda of their own. The public can often be misguided by propaganda as opposed to positively swayed by scientific research.
In this particular case, the research, once again, is overwhelmingly in favor of losing the processed carbohydrates. If you’re jonesing for some bread, try substituting the craving with some delicious quinoa, wild rice, or baked sweet potatoes. Your arteries, brain, waistline, and family will thank you.
And remember, you are always in charge of your own health. Educate yourself and seek the guidance of those you trust and who are well informed. Also, check out other articles on DrDaveCampbell.com to learn more about best health practices for yourself and your family.