Pass The Butter ... Please

Butter vs Margarine

“Pass The Butter … Please. Have you read this interesting rumor?

It is rumored within health circles that Margarine was originally manufactured to fatten turkeys. When it killed the turkeys, the people who had put all the money into the research wanted a payback so they put their heads together to figure out what to do with this product to get their money back.

It was a white substance with no food appeal so they added the yellow coloring and sold it to people to use in place of butter.

How do you like this story? I bet you almost believed it was true!! And it’s easy to believe that maybe there was a conspiracy behind such an unhealthy product, rather than simple human apathy, ignorance and maybe a little greed and nepotism.

The real margarine story

The truth is that the butter/margarine story actually stated in France, in 1869 Hippolyte Mège-Mouriès created what he called oleomargarine which was to later be called margarine. Hippolyte Mège-Mouriès was a French chemist and he was responding to a challenge by Emperor Napoleon III to create a butter substitute for the armed forces and lower classes.

The principal raw material in the original formulation of oleomargarine was beef fat. Then in 1871, Henry W. Bradley Patented a process of creating margarine that combined vegetable oils (primarily cottonseed oil) with animal fats.

Then Shortages in beef fat supply combined with advances by Boyce and Sabatier in the hydrogenation of plant materials soon accelerated the use of Bradley’s method, and between 1900 and 1920 commercial oleomargarine was produced from a combination of animal fats and hardened and unhardened vegetable oils. The depression of the 1930s, followed by the rationing of World War II, led to a reduction in supply of animal fat; and, by 1945, “the original” oleomargarine almost completely disappeared from the market. Which, caused manufacturers to switch almost completely to vegetable oils and by the 1950, oleomargarine had become acceptable.

At around this time between the 1920’s and 1960’s America’s were also suffering from a heart disease epidemic, and the incidence of heart disease rose precipitously to become America’s number one killer. During the same period butter consumption plummeted from an average eighteen pounds per person per year to four. It doesn’t take a Ph.D. in statistics to conclude that butter does not cause heart disease, which increased at the same time as the consumption of oleomargarine increased. This misinformation was then compounded with some bad science and incompetent public servants which branded Saturated fats (animal fats) as being the cause of the epidemic, so they started promoting oleomargarine as the healthy alternative

The reason we were tricked into thinking margarine was healthy is because it originally contained animal fats, but the ingredients were progressively changed to 100% unhealthy vegetable fats such as trans-fatty acids.

So what are the differences between margarine and butter


  • Butter is rich in the most easily absorbable form of Vitamin A necessary for thyroid and adrenal health,
  • Contains lauric acid, important in treating fungal infections and candida,
  • Contains lecithin, essential for cholesterol metabolism,
  • Contains anti-oxidants that protect against free radical damage,
  • Has anti-oxidants that protect against weakening arteries,
  • Is a great source of Vitamins E and K,
  • Is a very rich source of the vital mineral selenium,
  • Saturated fats in butter have strong anti-tumor and anti-cancer properties,
  • Butter contains conjugated linoleic acid, which is a potent anti-cancer agent, muscle builder, and immunity booster,
  • Vitamin D found in butter is essential to the absorption of calcium,
  • Is your only source of an anti-stiffness factor, which protects against calcification of the joints,
  • Anti-stiffness factor in butter also prevents hardening of the arteries, cataracts, and calcification of the pineal gland,
  • Is a source of iodine in a highly absorbable form,
  • Is a source of quick energy, and is not stored in our bodies’ adipose tissue,
  • Cholesterol found in butterfat is essential to children’s brain and nervous system development,
  • Contains Arachidonic Acid (AA) which plays a role in brain function and is a vital component of cell membranes,
  • Butterfat contains glycospingolipids, a special category of fatty acids that protect against gastro-intestinal infection, especially in the very young and the elderly,
  • Increased intake of saturated fatty-acids (SFAs) results in higher testosterone and thyroid hormone production. SFAs are (butter, coconut oil, lard, cacao butter, palm oil, red meat, dairy products), [PubMed] 6538617
  • Butter has been around for thousands of years where as modern Polyunsaturated margarine has been around for less than 70 years,[wiki] History
  • And lastly butter simply tastes much better than margarine and it can enhance the flavors of other foods.

Butter is essentially just the milk fat, it contains only traces of lactose, so moderate consumption of butter is not a problem for lactose intolerant people. Although people with a heightened milk allergy may still need to avoid butter. Whole milk, butter and cream all have high levels of saturated fat.

And now, for Margarine…

  • Margarine has no nutritional benefits unless they are artificially added!,
  • Is very High in Trans-fatty acids,
  • trans-unsaturated fatty acids have been shown to increase the risk of coronary artery disease by a factor of 3x,
  • Increases total cholesterol and LDL (this is the bad cholesterol) and lowers HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol),
  • Lowers the quality of breast milk,
  • Increases the risk of cancers and especially breast cancer in women, [ASCN] 49:433–442.
  • Increased intake of polyunsaturated fatty-acids (PUFAs) which then suppresses testosterone and thyroid hormone production. PUFAs are (soybean oil, canola oil, sunflower seed oil, cottonseed oil, margarine, etc),[PubMed] 6538617
  • Polyunsaturated fatty-acids (PUFAs) are very unstable when in contact with oxygen, heat, and light, causing them to literally go rancid inside the body. This creates free radicals and eventually oxidative damage in the cells, [PubMed] 10459507
  • hydrogenated fats and an excess of long chain fatty acids found in polyunsaturated oils and many butter substitutes both have a deleterious effect on the immune system,
  • Decreases your insulin response and increases insulin resistance.

Is margarine ONE MOLECULE (polyatomic ion) away from being PLASTIC?

This is another common rumor, let’s sprinkle some honesty on the plastic rumor.

Carbon chains in fatty acids are rarely longer than 22 carbons whereas polymer (plastic) chains often have thousands of repeat units. This length alone makes typical polymers biologically inert as they are too insoluble to be digested in normal biological systems.

So despite the superficial resemblance between some plastic polymers and fatty acids, they have little chemical resemblance and the claim that margarine is one molecule away from plastic is NOT TRUE.

Moreover, butter, a “natural” product differs from margarine only in having a different mix of fatty acids, butter being saturated fatty-acids (SFAs) and margarine is mostly made of polyunsaturated fatty-acids (PUFAs).

So no, margarine is not one molecule away from plastic, but unsaturated fats like Linseed oil are used in the manufacture of paint.

And although the facts have been distorted, it has been proven in study after study that margarine is harmful to human health.

Margarine is a trans-fat?

Trans-fat, or trans-unsaturated fatty acids, trans-fatty acids, are a type of unsaturated fat that occur in small amounts in nature, but became widely produced industrially from vegetable fats for use in margarine. Trans-fat has been shown to consistently be associated, with increased risk of coronary artery disease.

Have look at the flow chart below, it shows the margarine manufacturing process, and tell me if you still would eat margarine.

Margarine Flow Chart

Chinese Proverb:

When someone shares something of value with you and you benefit from it, you have a moral obligation to share it with others.

So share This With Your Friends…..(If you want to butter them up’)!


[wiki] butter, [webmd] candida, [wiki] lecithin, [wiki] anti-oxidants, [wiki] saturated fats,
[PubMed] Mylonas C, Kouretas D. Lipid peroxidation and tissue damage. In Vivo. 1999;13(3):295-309., [wiki] History of butter, [gastronet] lactose, [wiki] lactose intolerant, [wiki] Margarine, [wiki] Trans fatty, [wiki] coronary artery disease, [PubMed] Hämäläinen E, Adlercreutz H, Puska P, Pietinen P. Diet and serum sex hormones in healthy men. J Steroid Biochem. 1984;20(1):459-464., [ASCN] The American Society for Clinical Nutrition, Inc. Adlercreutz H., Hämäläinen E., Gorbach S. L., Goldin B. R., Woods M. N., Dwyer J. T. (1989) Diet and plasma androgens in postmenopausal vegetarian and omnivorous women and postmenopausal women with breast cancer. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 49:433–442., [Purdue Science] polyatomic ion


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