Butter and Margarine
Margarine is vegetable fat processed to resemble the taste, texture and appearance of butter. Although lacking the full, rich flavour of butter, those who wish to limit animal fats in their diet use margarine as a substitute. It usually has less cholesterol than butter. Also, saturated fat occurs naturally in animal foods such as butter. Saturated fat raises LDL (bad) cholesterol levels in your blood, which can clog arteries and lead to heart disease. The butter-versus-margarine debate is not a new one. In general, people believe that margarine is a healthier alternative to butter. Yet, we now know that there are margarines that contain trans-fatty acids and so the debate is far from over. If you are shopping for margarines, look for those with zero grams of trans-fats and no more than one gram of saturated fat per tablespoon. The best way to determine whether or not a product contains transfat is to check the ingredient label. If it includes ‘partially hydrogenated oil’, the product contains some amount of trans-fat. These small amounts of trans-fat can add up if the product is consumed in excess.