Can We Please Stop Worrying So Much About Butter?

Photographed by Janelle Jones.
Butter has long been considered a great foe in the battle for our health. But according to new research, we can probably all take that fear down a notch or two. For the study, published this week in PLOS One, researchers went through data from nine previous large-scale studies looking at the link between heart disease and diet. That included information for about 636,000 participants in several different countries. Specifically, the researchers wanted to keep track of the amount butter people were eating throughout their lives. They also looked at different causes of death and the rate of diabetes among participants. As NY Mag puts it, the results here are "pretty tame." It turned out that participants who ate higher amounts of butter weren't that much more or less likely to develop heart disease or diabetes or to have an earlier death. "These findings do not support a need for major emphasis in dietary guidelines on either increasing or decreasing butter consumption, in comparison to other better established dietary priorities," the study authors wrote. We also know that nutrition — especially when it comes to fat — is way more complicated than simply "good" or "bad." So, the bottom line here is that there are plenty of other things that have more of an impact on your health and, therefore, are more worth worrying about. For instance, sugar.

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