A UK cardiologist on the BBC news has just supported a new report that claims saturated fat is protective of the heart

On the news just now this cardiologist advises all of his cardiac patients to use butter in preference to all the low fat spreads! He was scathing of the current dietary advice. He believes that low carb, low sugar and higher unprocessed fat is the way to go and blames the current too high sugar/carb guidelines for widespread health problems. Is the tide finally turning?

17 Replies

  • Hello,

    I have been doing this for two years!, even at home "You are having butter on toast?", yes it works, my wife is now following me. There was one chap who gave his evidence here and wrote to the news paper no one wanted to know!!.

    When I read his comments, I went back to him with my findings, one person made him very happy. For me we need to look at the evidence. My GPs comments two years ago was you must take medication follow NHS food plan. Very difficult to un do the damage!, Still working on life style change. Money making machines will soon be going down the hill, only time will tell.

  • There's no point having toast unless you put butter on it! Those low fat spreads are disgusting. I do believe that the medical profession is beginning, slowly to revisit the low fat, low cholesterol mantra. I was interested to read the comments by one GP to the article (link posted by Penel). He is also calling into question the NHS diet sheet.

  • Before I change my lifestyle I should be interested to know who paid for this report. Or, am I just being cynical?

  • This is the original article published in the BMJ. The cardiologist quotes several research papers to back up his claim. I don't think anyone in particular paid him to contribute this article. The understanding of human biochemistry has changed a lot in the last 40 years, good to have this debated in the mainstream.


  • Thank you for posting the link to this article - From the Heart - Saturated fat is not the major issue - it makes very interesting reading, and a lot of sense, to me anyway. I hope his take on statins gets more widespread media coverage too. The comments from other medical professionals on the BMJ website to his article seem to be supporting what he says.

  • It is very easy to become cynical over anything that appears in the media! At least these days with the internet it's relatively straightforward to access the original reports and source material as well as find out if a particular 'interest' has links to the research. I was very interested to read this comment to the article, from a GP in Cumbria....

    "I spend a lot of time doing Q Risk 2 calculations with patients when assessing individual CVD risk. Over time, I've gravitated towards less emphasis on total cholesterol....but still rice, pasta, potatoes are in the "good for you" section of my diet sheet. Fatty foods are in my "don't touch with a bargepole" section. Is it time the mathematicians removed cholesterol from the algorithm? And, should carbohydrates now swap places with fatty foods on my healthy diet advice sheet?"

    And that's only part of what he has to say.

  • Interesting reading zorro. We live in interesting times and the more research is done, the more we shall discover. In the meantime, I am happy being a guinea pig as, because of research back in the 1980's, I am still alive. My father and four of his five siblings died between the ages of 42 and 60 - most likely because of FH. Cholesterol was not in the public's vocabulary in those days and saturated fats were a large part of everyday diets.

  • Yes, I do think research is the key. I guess we're all guinea pigs in this, although for some people, such as with your family history the stakes are much higher. I got chatting to a man in a pub once and he told me how several of his close relatives had died suddenly with heart related issues. He was in his forties and very scared. He didn't mention having being diagnosed with any kind of genetic condition. I didn't know about FH then but I do wonder now whether that was the cause.

  • Having being diagnosed myself very soon after the condition was first recognised - thirty years ago now - I feel very passionately that people are still dying because they did not know of FH. HEART UK are doing their best to get the message out but, as the most commonly known, inherited genetic disorder, I feel that "FH" should be as well known as "MS". No family should lose a member because of ignorance. (Sorry for the rant but I do feel we have to spread the word.)

  • There's nothing wrong with a good rant now and again, especially if it makes people sit up and take notice about a serious health issue!

  • I was interested to read this because of trying to loose weight without much sucess, also someone who has had to come off statins because of intolerable side effects I have been reading about the French who do not diet use butter, cream etc in their cooking apprently do not eat processed food so the theory there is that they only eat "real food" and probably a small glass of wine with their meal helps to break down the fat. I think more studies on other european diets and health statistics are needed

  • I agree with you. I use butter, cream, and eat a litre 9 % fat Greek yoghurt a week. I'm considering going back to full fat milk from semi skimmed. My weight is below 9 stone. As for statins I saw the awful effects of them on both of my parents, who thankfully have recovered after being taken off them.

  • I have been educating myself during the past few years since changing my diet to dairy free, and especially via this forum and have come to realise that the "natural" approach to food is the only way to go for me. I am determined never to go on statins, no matter now much my GP may want me to, and at the moment he doesn't. I am slowly going back to butter and cheese (Cheddar ) as I have done much research on dairy intolerance and am determined to help my body as much as possible by trying to avoid the processed "dairy free" foods that are full of additives! I am a pretty good home cook (at least my family say I am!) and do as much as I can from "scratch". The ingredients I use I try to be organic, fresh and local as much as possible, including local honey to help with hayfever and health. Whether or not this regime is acceptable to the NHS, my GP or even some of you I apologise. This is my choice and I feel well for it. My BP is low, my BMI is 24, my weight/height ratio is good and I feel better than I have in years. I have suffered from IBS for years and now know that it was the processed, and chemical rich foods I have been eating that have been the cause. Despite being told to the contrary, even by one Locum that I need to eat vegetarian and lose a stone!, I consider myself to be pretty fit and healthy for a 60 year old.

  • It's good to hear that you're feeling fit and well at 60. My husband is about to celebrate his 60th, after being diagnosed with diabetes in the past 18 months. That was a wake up call! He seems to be coping pretty well though having changed his sugar guzzling ways and taken up more exercise. I believe we do need to take some responsibility for our health and educate ourselves as best we can. Finding a way through the forest of 'information' out there can be tricky but forums like this are invaluable.

  • Yes i believe in that too. I have very high cholesterol, but my good is 4.8 and i eat pure butter all the time, eggs too and my doc told me that whatever i m doing to keep on so cause the good cholesterol is more important than anything else. I also eat lots of salmon, tuna and avocado and have no intention of changing my diet.

  • You doctor sounds like one of the enlightened ones!

  • My doctor also says that good HDL is the most important and she herself likes to have butter on her toast. She says not to worry too much about cholesterol numbers. Mine was only borderline high a year ago anyway. How often is cholesterol routinely checked once you are on their radar? I have high blood pressure so am monitored for that.

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