The word "fat" has a bad connotation, but as we all know, not all fat is created equal.
In recent years, health experts have been very clear about the fats we should avoid. They warn us that red meat can cause our gut bacteria to produce plaques that can cause heart attacks, strokes and other heart problems. The World Health Organization said it probably causes cancer, too.
But a massive new study in the Journal of the American Heart Association points out that, in order to protect yourself from heart disease, it's not enough to just avoid the bad fats; you also need to eat more healthy fats.
The major takeaway is that eating too little vegetable oils contributes to more heart-related deaths than eating saturated fats. Ten percent of global deaths from heart disease were likely due to eating too few omega-6 fats, whereas only 3.6% of those deaths came from eating too many saturated fats.
The authors estimate that eating more healthy fats — like those found in plants, nuts, and fish known as polyunsaturated fats — and fewer saturated fats and refined carbs could save up to a million deaths from heart disease per year.
Which means that the world is stuck on the wrong message.
“Worldwide, policymakers are focused on reducing saturated fats,” said study author Dariush Mozaffarian. “Yet, we found there would be a much bigger impact on heart disease deaths if the priority was to increase the consumption of polyunsaturated fats as a replacement for saturated fats and refined carbohydrates, as well as to reduce trans fats.”
In other words: It's not enough to cut out steak. You've gotta swap it with foods like salmon, nuts, avocados, coconut oil, and olive oil.
As Dave Asprey points out, they'll help your immune system, improve brain performance and reproductive health, balance your hormones, boost weight loss, encourage liver health, and as this study confirms, support heart function.
So ... guac for breakfast, lunch, and dinner? Sounds good to us.
Photo Credit: Stocksy