When cutting saturated fats from your diet, carefully consider what you will eat instead. That’s the advice from Frank Hu, professor of nutrition and epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, in a WebMD.com article published on August 13, 2015. Hu weighed in on a recent study published in the British Medical Journal that found that people who cut out saturated fat don’t necessarily lower their heart disease risk. Hu told WebMD that’s because many people who reduce saturated fats in their diet often start eating more unhealthy carbohydrates instead.
“When people reduce their saturated fat content, if they replace saturated fat with refined carbohydrates like white bread, bagels, and white rice, it is not going to do any good,” Hu said, because eating too many refined carbohydrates is also a risk factor for heart disease. Instead, he recommends eating more healthy fats such as vegetable oils, nuts, and seafood—which can help to lower heart disease risk. Moderation with these healthy fats is still important. Dietary guidelines recommend that we get no more than 10% of our daily calories from saturated fat, which Hu calls “reasonable.”