The answer, based on a mountainous volume of expanding peer reviewed studies is unequivocally NO on both counts.
If we told you that real butter made from cows fed grass is one of the most important foods you can ever eat, would you believe us? The first use of butter to be recorded in written form was found on a 4500-year old limestone tablet that illustrated how butter was made.
Clarified butter has been a staple food in India for more than 3000 years. You’re not still locked into the notion that foods such as grass fed butter, grass fed meat and free range chickens cause heart disease are you?
The strange thing is that butter is not a new food but heart disease is a relatively new condition. Prior to the 1920′s few people had even heard of the condition, let alone died from it.
As surprising as it may seem to some, butter, lard, meat, eggs and other naturally saturated fatty foods were consumed in large amounts prior to the “fat scare” and soaring heart disease statistics.
Could it be time to return to real, natural and whole butter? Here are six very good and scientifically proven reasons why you and your family should be eating real butter made from grass fed organic cow’s milk!
Butter protects the heart
O.K. so you are still working on that mind shift thing, we know. However, the fact that butter contains cholesterol is actually just one reason why you should be eating it. The dietary cholesterol in butter is an antioxidant, that’s right, an antioxidant.
The antioxidants in butter work to combat all of the dangerous free radicals roaming throughout our body. Butter also contains a number of important nutrients that protect you from heart disease including vitamins A, D, K2 and E, iodine, selenium and lecithin.
A survey conducted by the Medical Research Council demonstrated that men eating butter had half the risk of developing heart disease as those eating margarine.
Butter strengthens the immune system
Butter contains a type of vitamin A which is also found in meat, poultry and dairy. It is essential to immune system function as well as healthy lung, kidney and heart function. In places where vitamin A deficiency is common, infectious disease is a major problem. Vitamin A is also necessary for growth, reproduction, eye and skin health.
Butter protects joints
A Dutch researcher name Wulzen found that butter contains an “anti-stiffness” hormone that is known as the Wulzen factor. This protects joints from degenerative arthritis as well as hardening of the arteries, cataracts and calcification of the pineal gland. However, this substance is destroyed during the pasteurization process so eating raw milk, grass fed butter is best.
Butter is good for the thyroid
Butter contains a fair amount of iodine in a highly absorbable form. Consuming butter on a regular basis will keep your thyroid functioning properly. If you feel tired, depressed or have a very hard time losing weight, you may have a problem with your thyroid.
About five percent of all Americans suffer from hypothyroidism (inadequate levels of thyroid hormone). It could be that the food you thought you needed to steer clear of to manage your weight is just the one you need to be eating more frequently.
Butter protects from cancer
Butter contains a plethora of short and medium chain fatty acids which have been shown to have potent anti-tumor effects. In addition, butter contains conjugated linoleic acid which provides exemplary protection from cancer. In addition, vitamin A, vitamin E, selenium and cholesterol also protect against cancer in addition to heart disease.
Butter promotes a healthy digestive tract
The short and medium chain fatty acids in butter have very strong anti-fungal effects which help keep yeast overgrowth (candida), parasites, viruses and other hostile microorganisms at bay. Butter also contains glycosphingolipids which are a special type of fatty acid that protects against gastrointestinal infections in the very young and the elderly.
Why not margarine or butter spread?
Most butter spreads that carry the claim to be healthy contain more than 13 different ingredients including some that are downright suspicious. Included in these ingredients is often added sugar and soy lethicin. For some people, even a tiny exposure to soy can set off an immunological response.
Health experts warn that it can be just as reactive as gluten. The soybean oil in this product is also exempt from labeling, and it only takes a trace of it as well to trigger a reaction. According to the Free Dictionary, margarine is;
“A fatty solid butter substitute consisting of a blend of hydrogenated vegetable oils mixed with emulsifiers, vitamins, coloring matter, and other ingredients…”Sound appetizing? Margarine is generally high in trans fatty acids, which promote unhealthy cholesterol. According to Dr. Mary Enig, author of Know Your Fats, margarine actually decreases immune function making the body susceptible to an array of foreign invaders. Beware of so-called healthy heart blends, smart blends or any type of butter substitute that is blended.
Purchase organic unpasteurized butter whenever possible and if this is not available choose a high-quality organic cultured butter. You can also make your own cultured butter using starter grains and organic cream.
Either way you can enjoy the fresh and sweet taste of real butter without fear of it harming your health.
Cranton, EM, MD and JP Frackelton, MD, Journal of Holistic Medicine, Spring/Summer 1984
Nutrition Week Mar 22, 1991 21:12:2-3
American Journal of Physical Medicine, 1941, 133; Physiological Zoology, 1935 8:457
Jennings, IW Vitamins in Endocrine Metabolism, Charles C. Thomas Publisher, Springfield, Ill, pp 41-57