I just finished reading a fantastic review on “dietary fats and health” and I need to share a few interesting hints for anyone on Zero carb.
Basically, the article reviews the recent data revealing saturated fats are NOT associated with cardiac diseases and other adverse health effects (ex: cancer). If there was an association in the past, it was NOT because of saturated fats but other reasons.
In a few words, it is described how saturated fats result in far LESS inflammation than diets with either omega-3 or omega-6 polyunsaturated fats.
The less a fat is saturated, the more it is inflammatory. Monounsaturated fats (ex: olive oil) are more inflammatory then saturated (ex: meat, coconut oil), and polyunsaturated (ex: omega-6) are even more inflammatory then monounsaturated.
Al this being said, in nature, these fats are never 100% of one kind and so, they come in a mix. Coconut oil is 91% saturated, 6% monounsaturated and 3% polyunsaturated. Here are some components that can interest us:
Saturated Monounsaturated Polyunsaturated
Coconut oil 91% 6% 3%
Butter 65% 28% 7%
Olive oil 14% 72% 14%
Beef 50% 40% 10%
Pork 44% 48% 8%
Chicken 25% 50% 25%
As we can see, beef and pork are, on the average, 50 % saturated and 50% unsaturated (mono + poly combined). So clearly, on an all-meat diet, we are getting a GREAT amount of the “inflammatory unsaturated fats”.
The big problem being theses delicate lipids are sensible to “oxidation” and “peroxidation” in our body and when they are scavenged by cells in our arteries, particularly around the hearth, it may lead to atherosclerosis. Because saturated fats are not susceptible to oxidation, they have not been found to be involved in these mechanisms.
One important consideration here is most of the time, sources of predominantly saturated fats, such as meat, are often cooked at high temperatures, which can induce “oxidation and peroxidation” of the unsaturated fats they contain and thus promote heart disease, cancer and several other chronic diseases.
So, again, overcooking our meat, aside destroying vitamins, denaturing proteins (including antioxidants carnitine and carnosine) and leaching minerals out of flesh, also oxidize the unsaturated fats it contains. This is another reason to eat our beef raw when possible or, at least, not overexpose it to extreme temperature.
A meta-analysis including over one million folks and 20 studies found red meat was not associated with cardiac disease. In contrast, processed meat do. This help us to understand, again, why saturated fat has no causality here, but it could easily be other factors such as preservatives included in processed meat.
The “saturated fat hypothesis” doesn’t seem to hold. Anyway, countries with high intake of tropical oil, rich is saturated lipids, have some of the lowest hearth disease in the world.
Luckily, on Zero Carb, we have eliminated fructose, which increases triglycerides, increases levels of oxidized LDL-cholesterol, especially the small atherogenic sub-particles, and contributes to the metabolic syndrome. And, by eliminating all carbs, we also prevent “glycation” of proteins which also has a big place in initiation of many diseases.
To conclude, lets say it seems saturated fats are not responsible for the adverse effects with which they have been associated in the past; it is more because of the oxidation + peroxidation of the unsaturated fats they come with, especially the way we treat the said fats.