Eat more unsaturated fats and live much longer

Eat more unsaturated fats and live much longer

Eat more unsaturated fats and live much longer

Eat more unsaturated fats and live much longer, is what a brand new study from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health says.

In the large-scale study where participants were followed for three decades, researchers found that higher consumption of trans fats and saturated fats was linked to a higher death risk than the same amount of calories from carbs.

More importantly, replacing saturated fats with unsaturated fats showed significant health benefits. This supports the changes in the new U.S. dietary guidelines suggesting that the type of fat in a food is more important than the total amount.

The new study is the most detailed on the impact of dietary fats for health.

There has been widespread confusion in the biomedical community and the general public in the last couple of years about the health effects of specific types of fat in the diet,” said Dong Wang, a doctoral candidate, SD ’16, in the Departments of Nutrition and Epidemiology at Harvard Chan School and lead author of the study. “This study documents important benefits of unsaturated fats, especially when they replace saturated and trans fats.”

The study design and details
This cohort study investigated 83 349 women from the Nurses’ Health Study (July 1, 1980, to June 30, 2012) and 42 884 men from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (February 1, 1986, to January 31, 2012) who were free of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and types 1 and 2 diabetes at baseline. Dietary fat intake was assessed at baseline and updated every 2 to 4 years. Information on mortality was obtained from systematic searches of the vital records of states and the National Death Index, supplemented by reports from family members or postal authorities. Data were analyzed from September 18, 2014, to March 27, 2016.
The senior author weighs in

Our study shows the importance of eliminating trans fat and replacing saturated fat with unsaturated fats, including both omega-6 and omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. In practice, this can be achieved by replacing animal fats with a variety of liquid vegetable oils,” said senior author Frank Hu, professor of nutrition and epidemiology at Harvard Chan School and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.

The study advising to eat more unsaturated fats and live much longer was published in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Low-fat diets are not effective for weight loss.
Trans fats are linked to early death and heart disease risk.
Good high fat diet may postpone brain aging.

REFERENCES:
1. “Higher Consumption of Unsaturated Fats Linked with Lower Mortality.” EurekAlert! Harvard T.H. Chan School Of Public Health, n.d. Web. 05 July 2016.
2. “Association of Dietary Fats and Total and Cause-Specific Mortality.” JAMA Internal Medicine. JAMA Internal Medicine, n.d. Web. 05 July 2016.

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