Though we all probably care about health and nutrition, it’s hard to keep up with all the latest studies and advancements in the field. Although the basic calories in vs. calories out formula has held up at least as a weight loss standard, it seems that there are many complicating factors that play into that. For a long time, the common knowledge was that too much fat was bad for you. The main public health enemies were high cholesterol and high saturated fat.
Still, recent research seems to show that it may actually be carbohydrates that cause us so many problems.
The study was published in The Lancet and took data from 18 different countries into account.
All told, the study looked at adults between the ages of 35 and 70 with follow-up times between four and seven years, and the sample size was 135,335 people. Of all that data, it was found that high carb intake was more generally associated with higher risk of mortality. On the other hand, total fat and individual types of fat were related to a lower total mortality.
Shockingly enough, the study didn’t just show that fat wasn’t bad for you—compared to carbs, it may actually be good for you.
One of the study’s authors, Dr. Mahsid Dehghan, discussed the findings in more detail.
In particular, there is a bit of popular wisdom that says that getting only 10% of your calories from fat may be beneficial. Still, Dr. Dehghan said this was not the case:
“We found no evidence that below 10 percent of energy by saturated fat is beneficial, and going below seven percent may even be harmful. Moderate amounts, particularly when accompanied with lower carbohydrate intake, are probably optimal.”
Although these results are promising, scientists say that more research still needs to be done before official dietary guidelines are changed.
Still, to those who consider themselves amateur nutritionists, this may not be entirely shocking news. So what are we to do in light of this new information? As always, many of the dietary truths remain true: processed foods are bad, excess sugar is bad, whole foods like fruits and vegetables tend to be good. Above all, we should be careful where we get our dietary information—especially if it’s strange science being used to support the newest fad diet. OF course, there’s more information on good and bad fats out there for those who are interested.
Make sure you do your own research and talk to your doctor before making any major dietary changes!
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Source: CBS News