I frequently receive a newsletter from Dr. Mercola in my inbox. Sometimes it seems pertinent to nourishing my family and other times not so much. This particular headline grabbed my attention: 7 Reasons to Eat More Saturated Fat. The following comes from a new book by Drs Michael & Mary Eades: The 6-week cure for the middle-aged middle. I have yet to read the book, but am interested, considering their 7 reasons to eat more saturated fat:
1) Improved cardiovascular risk factors. Saturated fat plays a key role in cardiovascular health. The addition of saturated fat to the diet reduces the levels of a substance called lipoprotein (a) that correlates strongly with risk for heart disease. Research has shown that when women diet, those eating the greatest percentage of the total fat in their diets as saturated fat, lose the most weight.
2) Stronger bones. Saturated fat is required for calcium to be effectively incorporated into bone. According to one of the foremost research experts in dietary fats and human health, Dr. Mary Enig, Ph.D., there’s a case to be made for having as much as 50 percent of the fats in your diet as saturated fats for this reason.
3) Improved liver health. Saturated fat has been shown to protect the liver from alcohol and medications, including acetaminophen and other drugs commonly used for pain and arthritis.
4) Healthy lungs. For proper function, the airspaces of the lungs have to be coated with a thin layer of lung surfactant. The fat content of lung surfactant is 100 percent saturated fatty acids. Replacement of these critical fats by other types of fat makes faulty surfactant and potentially causes breathing difficulties.
5) Healthy brain. Your brain is mainly made of fat and cholesterol. The lion’s share of the fatty acids in the brain are actually saturated. A diet that skimps on healthy saturated fats robs your brain of the raw materials it needs to function optimally.
6) Proper nerve signaling. Certain saturated fats, particularly those found in butter, lard, coconut oil, and palm oil, function directly as signaling messengers that influence metabolism, including such critical jobs as the appropriate release of insulin.
7) Strong immune system. Saturated fats found in butter and coconut oil (myristic acid and lauric acid) play key roles in immune health. Loss of sufficient saturated fatty acids in white blood cells hampers their ability to recognize and destroy foreign invaders, such as viruses, bacteria, and fungi.
One More Reason to Eat Saturated Fat
Their is some research out there saying that you need saturated fat to help you absorb fish oils and cod liver oil. Researchers found that the saturated fat and the x-factor in butter helped you absorb the vitamins and essential fatty acids in cod liver oil. Makers of cod liver oil have recognized this and now make a combination cod liver oil and high butter oil supplement which you can find here.
Sources of Saturated Fat
A few years ago I was scared of saturated fat and we probably were not getting enough of it in our diet. Today is another story. We eat lots of the following:
- grass-fed butter (see sources)
- coconut oil & coconut milk
- raw milk & cream
- grass-fed meats (see sources for sales + free shipping)
- pastured animal fats (see sources for sales + free shipping)
How about you… do you need another reason to eat more saturated fats? Are you still getting over the myth that saturated fat is bad for you?
This post is a contribution to Fight Back Fridays.