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Why Butter Can Make You Thin

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 01/21/2014

BUTTER IS THE NEXT SUPERFOOD. Yes, butter: fatty, creamy, much-maligned butter.

Mind, of course, that I'm talking about good-quality, organic, hormone-free butter from grass-fed cows, (Kerrygold is my favorite brand.) but other than that, there's no catch. Butter is probably much better for you than you think.

Busting Butter Myths

1.  Is butter fattening?

No. Butter does contain a lot of fat, but as I've discussed before, the fat in food doesn't always become fat in your body. Butter contains omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which are your "healthy" fats that don't make you fat.

2.  Does butter clog your arteries?

Absolutely not. This was one of those bits of unquestioned health 'knowledge' that floated around for a while, and even I believed it at some point. I would love to know who started this rumor, because as it turns out, there is not a single piece of medical literature that supports this 'fact'. I suspect the people who spread this rumor had a lot to be gained by selling margarine as the alternative to butter.

3.  Is butter bad for your cholesterol?

Butter is good for your cholesterol! Just because foods contain fat and cholesterol doesn’t mean they will raise your cholesterol level. Lecithin is the antidote to high cholesterol, and butter is a good source of lecithin.

Why is butter so good for you?

The first thing you should know about butter is that as a fat, it is very easy to digest. A food that is rich in vitamins and minerals won't be all it's cracked up to be if it puts too much stress on your digestive system. Butter has all the good stuff, and it is highly accessible to your body.

Butter is rich in fat-soluble vitamins A, E, F, D, and K2.

These vitamins are important to the health of your skin and bones, calcium absorption, and much more. It is especially beneficial to get vitamins D and F together, because they must be in balance with each other to properly regulate and transport calcium in your body. The concentration of vitamin A found in butter is comparable to that of one of my other favorite superfoods: kale!

The trace minerals, iodine and selenium, are found in butter. Trace minerals are less common in dietary sources, but are nonetheless critical to keeping your body in optimal condition. Like vitamins D and F, iodine and selenium need to be balanced, so sources that contain both are the best.

Butter also contains a very special fatty acid that has very few dietary sources. (Coconut oil is the other graceful option; breast milk also contains this acid, but you can't buy that at Whole Foods).

Lauric acid has anti-tumor properties, and also helps increase your metabolism. So yes, butter can be a fat-burning food, in addition to all of its other benefits!

All of that is why I nominate butter as the next big (unlikely) superfood. You can and you should be cooking with butter and putting it to your food. It's good for you!

Discover butter and see more Nutrition advice from Dr. Berg Video Blog.


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