Is Saturated Fat Bad?

img

After talking to Dr. John Gildea about the myths and truths about cholesterol, which can be found here, we decided that it would be a good thing to discuss saturated fat, as recommendations here too have changed as the science has matured.  This past week, I sat down with both Dr. Gildea and Dr. Martin Katz to discuss both the science and clinical implications of saturated fat.

Here is a link to the article referenced in the talk.

Also, the lipid profile Dr. Katz references includes: VAP, cardio IQ, NMR lipoprofile including LDL particle number, small LDL-P, and APO-B, lipoprotien a, and hs-crp.

Transcript:

David Roberts:

Hey everybody. David Roberts here. And today we have John Gildea and Martin Katz, co-founders of BrocElite. And so we're going to talk some, and I'm going to facilitate them talking some about saturated fat, which we all know is bad for you. We've heard it again and again and again, but is it bad for you? Is all saturated fat bad for you? And so that's the question we're going to throw out today because of recent, not even that recent now, research has shown that there may be some myths there that need to be discussed. And so, we're going to just turn it over to you guys to discuss what are the truths and what are been myths about saturated fat?

John Gildea:

You can do that first stab.

Martin Katz:

All right.

Martin Katz:

This is no small topic, and the reason this is no small topic is I think a lot of us are incredibly confused about what we should and shouldn't be eating. I think most of us can agree on certain ideas of what we should be eating. I know we're talking about saturated fats, but certainly the idea of limiting refined sugars, I think most of us can agree on. And a good serving of plants, I think most of us can agree on them. Here we get to this idea of fats and what should we be doing, what shouldn't we be doing. You have on one side, the keto guys, carnivore guys. And on the other side, you have the vegan guys who are limiting all fats and oils. And so both of them claim that they have the way to longevity and better health. And so it becomes incredibly confusing.

Martin Katz:

So, I think what we're going to try and help you understand is that not all fats are equivalent, and you need to be cognizant of what the fats are doing to your health by using certain measurements or asking a physician to use certain measurements. And so, one of the big myths is that saturated fat across the board are bad. And while it is true that saturated fat can increase the indices that create heart disease, it has never been shown that saturated fat caused heart disease. Now that might sound one in the same, but what saturated fat can do is increase LDL cholesterol. It can change the ratio of LDL and HDL, but those things in and of themselves have not had a direct correlation to heart disease. In other words, two of the very important factors there, and that is oxidative stress and inflammation.

Martin Katz:

And so you need to have a very good understanding of what your LDL is doing, what your HDL is doing, what your LP(a)'s doing, how your ApoB's doing. And again, that's not in most lipid profiles. And so if you're going to a physician and he's getting just a cholesterol, triglycerides, LDL and HDL, while it can give you some idea of ratios and how important that is, there's a lot more data that we should mine. Including what I mentioned LDL oxidized is now marked, but you can look at myeloperoxidase. There's all these other factors that you can look at that will give you a much better understanding of what saturated fat may or may not be doing to you. And again, there's a whole variety of saturated fats

David Roberts:

Can we get a list of that that extra lipid profile that you request?

Martin Katz:

Yeah. I mean, there's numerous different ones.

David Roberts:

Yeah, but maybe we can get and have that attached to this podcast. I think that would be great.

Martin Katz:

Yeah. Yeah. And then there's the other understanding of what happened after this was studied, that saturated pet became the bad guy is what did we replace it with? And I think John will speak to that. The design of these studies, and what is happening within the system when you replace it with a bunch of carbs, certainly processed carbs, certainly sugar. We then get a pretty robust problem with increasing obesity, diabetes, all these other things. And so, does that make et cetera to pet bad then? No. Should we be cooperating into our diet? Almost certainly. How we incorporate it is again another question based on watching the profiles and seeing how they're working out.

John Gildea:

Yeah. That's awesome. I think it's hard to really say it in a very short period of time. But I think one of the things that is important to pull out from a kind of a long history is that, I think everybody knows this to a little bit of an extent, is that science has to have a marketing group that promotes certain diets and this and that. And when you mix sort of that sort of bias on top of science, the science is often degraded. And so usually in those scenarios, there's a piece of information that is really solid and true. And then some of them will take that and like, "I am going to eat only meat." That's an exaggeration of something that might be true is that, like what we say around here, is if you're going... Your meal should look a certain way, and you source the food from as best a source as possible. And everybody can look at a stock yard and them walking the cows walking around in feces up to their thighs and lakes of manure where everyone that walks around there has to have a face mask on.

John Gildea:

Yeah. So that, yeah. That source of meat probably is not going to be that great for you. But can you go down the road and that neighbor that raised his cows on this beautiful land that you wish you could get there and live there yourself. That food that you're eating from there is going to be awesome. Going to be better for you.

John Gildea:

And then the same with your fruits and vegetables. There's standard and then there's organic. And then there is a version of it that is composted in the love, and the person who picks vegetables all day long. That's the guy I want to buy my vegetables from.

John Gildea:

So in the context of that and a hundred years sort of misinformation, I think saturated fat got a really black eye. To the point where in the 70s and 80s, they were basically saying, "Reduce as much saturated fat as possible."

John Gildea:

And so with that backdrop, we want to pull out some pieces that are really solid. So, one really super solid piece of evidence is that trans fats are bad. So that's a vegetable oil that you can get when you do huge monoculture of soy and corn and all that. And this super prevalent fat. Shiploads fall. So there's a process of taking that and making it into the tallow that comes out of a cow with saturated fat, because that makes such beautiful muffins and the things that. So, that is a beautiful thing when it's used a little bit in a homemade muffin.

John Gildea:

So what ended up happening is this source of fat is cheap, and they want to put it in everything. So they were putting trans fats in all kinds of commercial foods. And so, they were mixing those trans fats with another source of food that was coming out was super easily accessible sugar. And that combination, I think everybody could agree, you're going to eat things that are quite addictive because of the characteristics of sugar. And the fat is really high in calories. So you're going to have massive excess calories, and you're going to have this inflammation that's from the sugar. That combination, I think we can see, especially in animal studies, that that is in every case, every model of whatever disease you want to study, is bad.

John Gildea:

And so those models... You actually order your diet when you're doing a study on rats and mice, and that diet is called a high-fat diet. It's a standard diet you order. Well, it is all true, the things that I said. It's massively extra caloric. It used to be trans fats. Now it's saturated fats and very high sugars. So, it's excess calories. Originally it was trans fats, but now tons of saturated fat which is just very caloric and then sugar on top of it. And that can cause just about every disease you can study. So, that's the backdrop of it.

John Gildea:

With the studies recently, if you just try to isolate the saturated fat as the source of it, turns out not to be significant. There's been a number of meta-analysis that showed that it's not the cause of lipidation. You're trying to singling out saturated fat as the cause each.

David Roberts:

And can you all touch on, is there a difference between saturated fat from let's say a conventional, non-organic cow versus organic, grass fed, grass finished cow?

Martin Katz:

Yeah. I mean, I think that gets down to you're looking omega-3, 6, 9 ratios. And certainly the grass fed cow has a much better 3/9, 6/9 ratio than a cow that's going to be CAFOed (Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation) who needs large lots and they feed a plant that they're just not used to processing, corn.

David Roberts:

What's CAFO?

Martin Katz:

It's a large agricultural body that John was talking about where there's a lot of mud and feces rather than grass. It's an industrial feeding complex.

David :

Industrial feeding complex. 

Martin: Yeah. You were looking for that. 

David: Please expound.

Martin Katz:

So a place that basically, John was saying, you don't want to get your animal protein from and saturated fat. And so the ratios are so much different in the fact that they're going to be pro-inflammatory versus anti-inflammatory. And again, you're cooking your meat and creating all these tetracycline. I mean, then you've got a lot of inflammation. I think you're going to possibly see more disease process than a meat that is coming from a grass-fed, what you're eating it with, how you're preparing it.

Martin Katz:

Certainly we're big fans of cruciferous that can actually block some of the harmful effects of these heterocyclic amines from darker meats. So, there's so much to understand about nutrition. But again, if you're intentional about your health, you're looking at the indices, you're doing what it takes to understand that and feel good and look to feel good. I think you're well ahead of the system and not getting so compressed by all these details, and competing studies, and all these mouths out there who are saying, "You have to eat a certain way. This is the way you're going to eat." Because again, population studies, they're not looking at you. They're looking at populations. And it's hard to know how that specifically applies to you. And so be intentional about your health, and get to a physician who understands the broader picture.

John Gildea:

Yeah. We talk a lot about micronutrient density. See your food, when you're getting that really awesome version of food, all the micronutrients that are in there are going to be pretty packed. If you just took saturated fat, even from a good source, it's going to be pretty neutral. It's highly caloric. You're not going to get a lot of micronutrients that we need to get to. And so, it's pretty neutral. Just straight saturated fat, as long as you don't exceed your caloric intake you can eat much of that.

John Gildea:

So you can definitely have you had your saturated fats, especially if it's from a source where the animal looks really good. And even putting butter, We're pretty big fans of butter too. Again, you've got organic and grass-fed. There's a bunch of molecules that are not normally there. So, even that butter works as a source of either one of those maligned sources of bad things. Butter comes up. That's pretty clearly not. It's margarine (that is bad).

Martin Katz:

It's been replaced with. Yeah.

John Gildea:

And then CLA and MK4, the vitamin K2 that's in butter, and also butyrate, which butyrate is named from butter. Good stuff there. So I think in general, you think of saturated fat, it's pretty neutral. It's pretty bad when added on top of what you think of the SAD diet.

David Roberts:

The Standard American Diet.

John Gildea:

The Standard American Diet.

Martin Katz:

Standard American Diet.

Martin Katz:

Yeah, I think that's the other thing we were trying to understand is if you're taking something out in a diet, what are you replacing it with? And I think that's really important to understand. So if you're taking out saturated fat because your doctor says you've got a lot of inflammation and you're LDL oxidation is high, and the hs-CRP is high, and maybe you've got some significant heart disease in your family.

Martin Katz:

What are you putting in the diet instead, less vegetables, fruits, or grains, maybe some healthier and unsaturated oils or exactly what are you doing? Are you putting in sugar? Now that these things are hopefully more and more accessible and understandable. Again, a fair amount of physicians get maybe 0, maybe 1 lecture during medical school on nutrition. And so, I'm promising you, get out there and see a nutritionist or what have you to understand the big picture.

David Roberts:

So what percentage of your diet, personally, is saturated fat? John.

John Gildea:

John?

David Roberts:

Yeah.

John Gildea:

I think I'm pretty even on the macros. I try to reduce the sugars as much as possible. I'm staying under probably 40 grams of sugar which is on the high end, but I'm not doing a keto. But in that case, I'm doing intermittent fasting. With intermittent, I'm not really fasting. But then probably pretty easy between switching a little bit more backward.

David Roberts:

So American Heart Association of which you are a member, I hear.

John Gildea:

Premium.

David Roberts:

Premium Member. Recommends 5 to 6% of your caloric intake at most should be saturated fats. That's at 2000 calories at 120 calories.

Martin Katz:

So again, they're looking at those studies that show that the indices of heart disease, again LDL, HDL are affected by saturated fat. But again, very large meta-analysis 2014, 2017 did not show a correlation between saturated fat and actual heart disease risk.

John Gildea:

And we'll have this, at least one of those in this upload link to click as well. But so my point being that's low unnecessarily So-

Martin Katz:

But for the American Heart Association, it kind of makes sense to a degree.

David Roberts:

Yes.

Martin Katz:

If they would then take it a step further and just help people understand, "Well, this is why we're doing it. There's still not a direct correlation."

David Roberts:

Can I-

John Gildea:

Falls in the same category for me as the taking 70 years to figure it out that Vitamin C cured scurvy.  If I was an MD I'd be a lot more worried because MDs treat patients, but I'm the PhD version of the member of the AHA, so...

Martin Katz:

The that's why all these... We'll, again, refer to them in the notes, why it's so important not to just rely on the lipid protocol because there's so much more data that needs to be looked at before you can category say, "This is what you need to do."

Martin Katz:

And you know your neighbors possibly doing a keto or carnivore, and they're doing lots of saturated fats and they've never felt better. And their markers have never looked better. And so this is why you need to have the information about you. You don't need to listen to your neighbor. You don't need to listen to Joshua down the road. You need to go to your physician to figure out ultimately how this relates to you, and what it's doing for your markers, and based on your risk factors. So that's what it's about. But again, I think we can all agree, low sugar, more plants. That's it.

David Roberts:

So I'm going to go back to my question because I want one number answered.

Martin Katz:

I Certainly can't give you one number. 

David:

It doesn't have to be absolute. Give me a range then. Approximate range of saturated fat intake in your average daily diet.

John Gildea:

Again, I'm pretty even I think between... Because I for sure eat more animal products, but it's because we spent a lot of time sourcing our products. So I do eggs, and chickens that are actually free range and eating insects.

Martin Katz:

You're not getting a number, Dave, because I'm like...

John Gildea:

So I'm going to say...

Martin Katz:

30%. 20 to 30%?

John Gildea:

I would say maybe 40.

Martin Katz:

I would say I'm closer to 20, 30%. I probably do a lot more vegetable matter. So I'm closer to 20, 30. And again, during the ProLon diet I'm going to be close to zero. But it sort of varies. And I've done vegan at times where I'm pretty low on saturated fat. But for the most part, I would say, I follow fairly close to Mediterranean-ish diet, and I feel fairly comfortable at 20 30%. And again, I'm usually looking at my markers and seeing where I am, and how I'm feeling, and how my athletic performance is. How well am I recovering.

John Gildea:

I eat vegetables but I soak them in butter.

David Roberts:

The meat John eats, the cows have eaten so many vegetables, they themselves can be considered a vegetable. That's the rational.

David Roberts:

So great. Well, this has been super helpful guys. So thank you for sitting here and talking, and hopefully some of the myths and some of the truths of saturated fat have been clarified. So thanks for joining in-

Martin Katz:

Thanks for taking care of your health.

David Roberts:

And find us on Facebook. Find us on Instagram. @BrocElite. And we will see you soon. Thanks so much.

Martin Katz:

Thanks.

0 Comment

Leave a Comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

img