You hear the commercials… “Use margarine to protect your heart” or “lower your cholesterol with margarine”. Have you ever stopped to wonder how margarine could ever protect your heart or lower your cholesterol?
I have. Let’s discuss…
Margarine is made of vegetable oil. Generally, “the cheaper, the better,” say the food industry CFO’s. So they choose canola, soy or cottonseed as the base oils. However, these oils are liquid at room temperature, so they must go through processing to make their oils solid and spreadable - called hydrogenation. This process happens at high heat, destroying any last redeeming qualities of the oils, and creates trans fats. They can label the margarine trans-fat free because the oils started off as not being trans fats.
Some margarine manufacturers add plant sterols, so they can claim that the plant particles help to lower your cholesterol. Plant sterols are substances that occur naturally in fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds that help to prevent cholesterol from gathering in arteries ~ you should just eat the real foods to get that benefit!
Added to that are the artificial colors, preservatives, chemical alterations and various other toxins to create the finished process.
Margarine is manufactured in a factory with toxic additives. Bigstock images.
So what about butter?
Butter is solidified animal fat. Although it is non-hydrogenated, think of the source of the product. The cow is fed antibiotics to “keep her healthy” and is kept in a cramped stall for her entire life. She is artificially inseminated, gives birth and immediately has her calf taken from her. She is fed hormones so she may continue to produce milk. Since her baby has been taken from her, biologically, she no longer needs to produce milk.
Her milk is pasteurized, beaten into cream, separated from the whole milk, and churned into butter. The butter has essential vitamins and minerals in it, and is definitely better than the manufactured margarine, but it is still a saturated fat. A better choice would be choosing butter from cruelty-free farms, with free-range, grass fed cows. Is this even the best choice?
Cows chained to a stall to produce milk to make butter. Cruel? Bigstock images.
We have to ask… what about coconut oil?
The best choice you can make is to choose extra virgin, cold pressed coconut oil. It is made of medium-chain fatty acids, which have a healing effect on the brain, cells and joints. It is beneficial for your skin and hair; has antibacterial and antimicrobial properties; helps to lower blood cholesterol and actually helps you lose fat.
The winner…. coconut oil by a landslide!!
Coconuts found in palm trees. Bigstock images.
Jo-Anne Richardson, Registered Holistic Nutritionist & Energy Medicine Practitioner
Jo-Anne works with Fournier Homeopathic & Integrative Health to provide online education for clients and patients. Her interest in healthy, joyful living is demonstrated in her writing, coaching and teaching. Her goal is to improve the health of her community by empowering you with knowledge, support and new ideas.
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