Spokane Naturopathic Medicine | Doctor Lindsay Donahue
October 19th, 2017
It’s time to reach your health potential.
(509)263-2130

Weight-loss, Weight-gain and Dietary Fat

P1010157

Obesity is a Serious Health Concern

We as a nation are getting fatter. In 2011 The Lancet study statistics state that 7 out of 10 Americans are overweight or obese . . . that’s 68% of us that could stand to lose a few pounds and adapt our diet for a better nutritional balance .
Only a few years ago it was believed that eating fat makes you fat. “Fat-free” and “low-fat” products were popular. If you asked the typical person on the street they will probably tell you that eating fat makes you fat and that saturated fat causes heart disease. This is what the “experts” have been saying for the past 50 plus years or so.
It’s astounding, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that the government still stands by their guidelines recommending that Americans ought to consume less than 10% of their calories from saturated fatty acids replacing them with monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids. As well as limiting daily dietary cholesterol to 300 mg or less. It is also recommend to limit total fats to 25-30% of the daily caloric intake – which is only about 5 tablespoons a day for a diet of 2400 calories.
Coronary heart disease used to be so rare in America, that when Paul Dudley White introduced the German electrocardiograph in 1920 to colleagues at Harvard, he was advised to concentrate on a more profitable branch of medicine. During the next 40 years, coronary heart disease incidence rose so dramatically that by the mid 1950’s it was the leading cause of death among Americans!
Fat became an enemy in the late 1950’s after Ancel Keys proposed a direct relationship between saturated fat and cholesterol in the diet and the incidence of coronary heart disease. Keys’ research received substantial publicity despite the many subsequent studies that questioned his data and conclusions.
Today, 40% of US deaths are attributed to heart disease. But, if heart disease is from the consumption of saturated fats, wouldn’t you expect a corresponding increase in animal fats in the American diet? Between 1910 and 1970, traditional animal fat in the American diet declined from 83% to 63%; butter consumption dropped from 18 pounds per person per year to only 4 pounds per year. Dietary cholesterol intake has only increased 1%.
Between 1910 and 1970 the consumption of dietary vegetable oils (margarine, shortening, and refined oils) increased 400% and consumption of sugar and processed foods increased about 60%.
Gary Taubes writes in the journal Science of March 30, 2001, titled “The Soft Science of Dietary Fat:”
Since the early 1970’s, for instance, American’s average fat intake has dropped from over 40% of total calories to 34%; average serum cholesterol levels have dropped as well . . .
Meanwhile, obesity in America, which remained constant from the early 1960s through 1980, has surged upward since then – from 14% of the population to over 22%. Diabetes has increased apace. Both obesity and diabetes increase heart disease risk, which could explain why heart disease incidence isn’t decreasing. That this obesity epidemic occurred just as the government began bombarding Americans with the low-fat message suggests this possibility . . . that low-fat diets might have unintended consequences – among them, weight gain. “Most of us would have predicted that if we can get the population to change its fat intake, with its dense calories, we would see a reduction in weight,” admits [Bill] Harlan [of the NIH]. “Instead we see the exact opposite.”
Sources
Eat, Drink, and Be Healthy by Walter Willett MD
Dr. Bernstein’s Diabetes Solution
The Mood Cure by Julia Ross MA
Fats that Heal, Fats that Kill by Udo Erasmus
The Truth about Saturated Fat by Mary Enig PhD and Sally Fallon; Eat more Saturated Fat by Dr. Mercola.)