The soaring popularity of margarine has, in a way, made the generations old butter notorious and compelled us to make a choice- butter or margarine?
While many households have switched over to the ‘healthier margarine’ option already, we will today tell you if it really is the healthier choice over butter.
There is however, still, a lot of confusion over which option to go with in the minds of the common junta.
Why The Confusion?
You throw in some showy albeit convincing advertisements between shows and you would have made people believe you.
Exactly what they have done with margarine.
Butter is made by churning out the fatty portion of cow milk and by continuing this process until we get a battery substance- butter.
It is 100% natural.
What About Margarine?
Margarine is, simply, fake butter.
The primary ingredient of margarine is vegetable oil. Vegetable oil along with colorants, emulsifiers, preservatives and other additives all artificial ingredients form margarine.
Moreover, vegetable oil needs to undergo hydrogenation to be converted to margarine. Hydrogenation process produced excessive trans fats which are harmful for your body.
So, Margarine or Butter?
Butter or Margarine- both serve the same purpose. They are used as cooking mediums, for purposes of baking and also as spreads for various food items.
Margarine is widely considered better than butter when it comes to heart health.
Since margarine is made from vegetable oils, it contains unsaturated ‘good’ fats (polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats). These varieties of fats help reduce the low density lipoprotein, more commonly known as the ‘bad’ cholesterol, when substituted for saturated fat.
Butter, on the other hand, is made from animal fat and consequently contains more saturated fat.
However, even within margarine there are many varieties of it which may not be all equal. Some margarine varieties contain trans fats.
It is a general rule that the more solid the margarine is, the greater is its trans fat content. Hence stick margarines have comparatively greater trans fat content than tub margarines do.
According to the Heart Foundation of Australia, butter contains about 50% saturated fats and 4% trans fats. Margarine, on the other hand, contains only about 28% saturated fats and less than 1% trans fats. Margarine is hence a better source of healthier fats.
Research has shown traditional butter to be a better choice than margarine.
In an experiment carried out in Australia, a sample of middle aged Australian men who had either experienced a heart attack or suffered from angina was taken and half of these people were advised to cut down on their animal fat intake and instead replace it with safflower oil and safflower oil margarine, while the other half continued their intake of butter.
The expectation from the experiment was to prove that people consuming margarine would be in a better state of health, but the opposite turned out to be true. Those who ate higher quantities of the safflower derived products were almost twice as likely to die from health related issues, including heart conditions.
“Margarine is like fake butter which is produced artificially. They may end up using a mix of low-quality oils to reach stability. Butter may have more calories yet it’s natural and healthier. If you want to add poly and mono fats to your diet, I’d suggest go for olive oil or avocado oil.”
-Dr. Shikha Sharma
There has also been a paradoxical shift in the scientific beliefs. The saturated fats contained in the meat and dairy products that were once considered bad for the body might now actually have been proven to be beneficial instead.
These fats have been identified as the key components of cell membranes, essential for the production of certain hormones and having an important role to play in the transport and absorption of certain vitamins and minerals.
Grass fed raw butter (Ghee) is better than margarine!
The major factors that make our traditional ghee better than the relatively new margarine are-
1. Vitamin K2 – This vitamin plays a major role in preventing various fatal diseases such as cancer, coronary diseases and osteoporosis.
2. CLA – Studies have shown that this fatty acid in particular has anti-cancer properties and also helps lower the body fat percentage in humans.
3. Butyrate – It is essentially a short chain fatty acid found in butter, which incidentally is also found in the bacteria contained in the intestine. It fights inflammation, improves digestive health, and also helps prevent weight gain.
4. Omega 3 – Grass fed butter contains lesser amounts of Omega 6 and higher amounts of Omega 3 which is essential since most people already have within their bodies high amounts of Omega 6 fatty acids due to high amounts of fried fatty foods being consumed.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Ghee is definitely better than margarine and people should stick to the more traditional option than switch over to the not so beneficial margarine.