Ancel Keys

There They Go Again

All of the proof has been going in favor of the nutritional value of beef, pork, eggs and dairy, reversing through actual human studies the mere theories that arose in the ‘60’s that the red meats were the cause of rising heart disease rates in the U.S. (Ancel Keys, the primogenitor of such nonsense, is a profanity at Jolie Vue.) In fact, I was listening to NPR on a recent road trip and heard an interview with a member of the committee putting together the new government dietary guidelines. He predicted that for the first time in 5 decades, the consumption of natural animal fats would be encouraged by the new guidelines, noting that fats were not the problem but instead that fault lay at the doorstep of the simple carbs and huge rise in the refined sugars. Duh! He believed that things like skim milk in the school cafeterias would be replaced by whole milk, reflecting the benefits of natural fats. In general, what had been recommended as maximum fat intake would soon become the minimum allowance instead.

Did that happen? No. 

Do you doubt that the whole issue of animal fats has become politicized rather than science based? Now you know.

We will delve more deeply into the science in coming issues, but for now just take my word for it — “it’s the sugars, stupid”.

Eat Fat - On the Pig

Like the pig, all fat got a bad but unproven rap following World War II. A fellow by the name of Ancel Keys published the rap but didn’t tell us that he had been selective in his choice of dietary cultures. Very sloppy work on his part, but like a lot of poor science, the idea that fat was bad for us became embedded. The fact is, fat is an essential element in our diet so long as it is well-raised. It is much more likely that heart disease and obesity/diabetes is linked to processed, hydrogenated oil, margarine and sugar (in all of its forms) than anything linked to animal fat. All you have to do is look at the correlation between those oils and sugars and the health calamity. Animal fat doesn’t drive the graph at all, but the consumption of the others line up. So we got the skinless chicken breast instead, a ridiculously un-nutritious way to eat meat, while we tried to fill our satisfaction gap  with vegetable oils and sugars. And we got fat.