I heard that butter is better for you than margarine. Is this true?

  • Posted by Dr. Jay Gordon

No, definitely not! In fact, in my opinion, butter may be the worst dairy product of all. It’s nothing but congealed grease. Since it’s the fattiest part of milk, it carries the most pollutants. This is because many pollutants are fat-loving, fat-soluble chemicals. It can also directly contribute to a dramatic increase in heart disease, a condition which begins in the first five years of a child’s life even though it may not kill until many years later. I don’t think children, or anyone for that matter, should eat butter.

Let’s be very clear about another popular misconception. Margarine isn’t any better than butter. Even though it’s a vegetable product, margarine is greasy and full of “trans fats”. Trans fats, which are liquid vegetable oils that have been hydrogenated to make them spreadable and to increase their stability, have been proven to increase the incidence of cancer. A study by the Harvard School of Public Health states that margarine is associated with a 70% increase in the risk of heart disease in women. Dr. Walter Willet, who authored a study published in a British medical journal, Lancet, in March, 1993, advocates the use of soybean, corn or canola oil to replace the partially hydrogenated vegetable fats found in most margarine.

Researchers have found that when women eat four or more teaspoons of margarine a day, they are at significantly greater risk for heart disease than women who eat two teaspoons or less during the same period. Furthermore, they have discovered that this increased risk is also present when the hydrogenated vegetable fats are consumed in breads and cookies.

Be safe! Stay away from butter and margarine and the processed foods that contain them. You and your children will be healthier without them!

Please remember…..
Be gentle as you are making dietary improvements for your family. Some families do well with a drastic and complete change and some require a more gradual approach that leads them to a very occasional indulgence of a favorite food. Find what works for your family as you walk this path to improving your health by improving your foods.