Are you still eating low-fat or no-fat dairy products? If you are, then you probably think you’re doing the right thing for your health.
The American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, and American Cancer Society, have all recommend low-fat or no-fat dairy. The US Department of Agriculture, in their nutrition guidelines for Americans, also advises, “Dairy Group choices should be fat-free or low-fat.”
So what’s the problem?
Well, the problem is that, it’s not scientifically supported. If you’re choosing low-fat over full-fat, not only are you missing out on taste, flavor and satisfaction, but you’re missing out on valuable benefits to your health – benefits that come from eating full-fat foods.
According to the guidelines, eating too much saturated fat causes ‘bad’ cholesterol to build up in the bloodstream.
However, a slew of recent studies have shown the situation with saturated fat isn’t actually that clear. In 2014, a large review of studies that involved more than half a million people showed that saturated fat doesn’t cause heart disease. In 2013, a report in the British Medical Journal stated there’s no link between the two.
Indeed, recent prospective cohort studies have not supported any significant association between saturated fat intake and cardiovascular risk. Instead, saturated fat has been found to be protective,” wrote cardiologist Aseem Malhotra.
Still, not all health experts agreed with this assessment. And it appears that the situation with saturated fat is more complex than we’ve been led to believe. According to Deakin University nutrition expert, David Cameron-Smith,
Saturated fat is not just one fat, we know that different types of saturated fat vary from the harmless to those that are most definitely dangerous to heart health. The real question is identifying what saturated fats are dangerous by following different types of fat from food into our blood and then into the fat storage deposits of our body.”
Since whole milk isn’t even that fatty, perhaps it’s time to switch back to the good stuff.
Countless studies show that if you replace saturated fat with polyunsaturated fat, you do get a reduction in heart disease risk,”says nutrition expert, Alice Lichtenstein.