Toss Out the Old Nutrition Advice Along with the Junk Food – Dr. Axe

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This article is based on scientific conclusions, written by specialists and verified by facts in our qualified editorial staff. Note that the numbers in brackets (1, 2 etc.) refer to peer-reviewed medical research.

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Johnny Bowden, PhD, CNS.

19. August 2020

During this last pandemic, we all saw food buyers loading their carts with processed products. But while the boxes of macaroni and cheese fly off the shelves, the production hall remains fully occupied and I have not noticed any shortage of quality meat and fish or healthy fats.

However, when I suggest to people that the healthiest diet they can follow in these difficult times is one that contains more of these high-fat foods and less of the processed, non-perishable foods that we all stock, many people look at me as if I’m crazy. What about all that fat and cholesterol? They’re asking. Wouldn’t that put me in cardiac arrest?

Well, no. They don’t. But here’s the big dilemma: It seems that everyone today gives nutritional advice. But who do you believe in and how do you make wise decisions about what you want to invest in your body?

Some dietary recommendations have been exceeded for decades

I am an enthusiastic student in nutritional research and it frustrates me when well-known organisations give nutritional advice based on a mix of old and new data. Most of them are just not what we know today.

In fact, a nutritionist – Dr. Zoe Harcomb – has published an article on the phenomena in the BMJ. The name says it all: Evidence from randomised controlled trials does not support current dietary fat guidelines: systematic evaluation and meta-analysis 1.

Then why do doctors and other so-called experts keep advising to avoid high-fat diets? That’s why I think this is happening: It’s much easier to just repeat the same old conversations – avoiding cholesterol and saturated fats – than it is to teach people how to change their diet to be healthier.

Another reason why it is so difficult to get a direct answer to food is that food, like people, does not fit into the well-defined categories of bad and good. For example, not all saturated fats are bad and not all unsaturated oils are good. Some saturated fats have neutral or positive health effects (e.g. Malaysian palm oil), while some unsaturated fats (e.g. vegetable oils such as corn and soy) are inflammatory and should be avoided!

Several studies carried out over the past ten years have clearly shown that saturated fats do not cause heart disease. We now know that rapeseed, sunflower, corn and soy have a strong seditious effect! And as Dr. Sinatra and I indicate in our book The Great Cholesterol Myth, inflammation is the additional or promoting factor in almost every degenerative disease you don’t want to get, including heart disease!

So instead of just avoiding all the saturated fats, remember which ones you should avoid and which ones are good for you.

Why have medical consultations remained unchanged for decades, while health problems are increasing in America? In the new feature-length documentary Fat Fiction, I joined other leading health experts to investigate the facts and myths about saturated fats in the human diet.

In the film we share more than a decade of published research that confirms that fat, especially saturated fat, has been wrongly demonised. It doesn’t cause heart disease. Worse still, the low-fat dietary guides that we have followed since the 1980s have never been based on sound science, as the aforementioned work of Zoe Harcomb has shown.

What do you have to eat?

Here are three ways to make the right decision about what to eat.

1. Check the sources for all items related to health and nutrition.

A study should never be the basis for your nutritional decisions, because research is always contradictory. And don’t buy promotional material on clinical trials that support the latest fat burners. Usually this takes place in a person’s office and is not subject to peer review.

Instead, wait for the numerous studies carried out by renowned universities that confirm the same results. Again, you need to know who funded the research and who benefits from the results. Commercial interests in scientific research may be inevitable, but at least we know.

2. Be open to research into the ingredients you want to add to your diet.

For example, there are people who focus too much on palm oil. They make you think it’s bad for you and the environment. They also remain attached to the idea from the 1950s that all saturated fats contribute to heart disease. Both convictions are wrong. Some countries, particularly Malaysia, are enthusiastic about protecting the environment. Malaysian palm oil is produced continuously and does not contribute to the inflammation. Real Malaysian palm oil is one of the healthiest edible oils I know.

Malaysian palm oil is also a rich source of vitamin E-tocotrienols, which keep the heart and brain healthy. And heart health is a major concern in this country! It is also a food substitute for trans fatty acids.

3. Eat food your grandmother would recognise as food.

Eat what I call Johnny Bowden’s four food groups: Food that you can hunt, fish, pluck from the ground or pull from a branch.

In other words, follow the most important mantra of modern nutrition: Eat. The real one. The food. Everything else is just details.

Johnny Bowden, PhD, CNS, also known as The Nutrition Myth Buster™ is a nationally certified nutritionist and expert in nutrition and weight loss. He has joined the Dr. Oz Show, Fox News, CNN, MSNBC, ABC, NBC and CBS as a nutritionist, contributing to The New York Times, Forbes, The Daily Beast, The Huffington Post, Vanity Fair Online, Men’s Health, Prevention and dozens of other printed and online publications.

Dr. Johnny is a 15-book bestseller, including The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth, Living Low Carb (now in its fourth edition), and co-author, with cardiologist Stephen Sinatra, of the controversial bestseller The Great Cholesterol Myth : Why a reduction in cholesterol cannot prevent heart disease and a plan that is not tied to statistics will work. His last book, Smart Fat: Eat more fat, lose more weight, get healthy! – written with PBS star Stephen Masley, MD – was published by Harper Collins in January 2016.

Follow the @jonnybowden.

Facebook: Dr. Johnny Bowden.

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