Drop everything you know about eating and dieting and read this.
According to a global study published in The Lancet and reported by CTV News, consuming moderate amounts of fat seems to reduce the risk of premature death. The study involved following over 135,000 people across 18 countries and five continents for seven-and-a-half years and their diets.
The findings showed that those people who ate fat as part of their 35% daily caloric intake, which means their diets consisted of a moderate amount of fat, had lower risks of death compared to those who had less fat intake. The findings also showed people with diets high in carbohydrates, or more than 60% of their caloric intake, were linked to higher death rates. In simpler terms, too much carbs is bad, and too little fat is bad, but somewhere in the middle is just right.
Overall, the study showed that eating a diet with moderate fat, low carbs, fruits and veggies lowers the risk of premature death, and that saturated fats aren’t as bad as people tend to believe.
Now while this may sound surprising in a world where fat is a huge no-no, the researchers of the study say that this study aligns with other major diet studies in the past 20 years. Now, fat intake might just be too low, which leads to other problems, such as higher mortality rates.
“A decrease in fat intake automatically led to an increase in carbohydrate consumption and our findings may explain why certain populations…who do not consume much fat but consume a lot of carbohydrates, have higher mortality rates,” lead author Mahshid Dehghan said in a news release.
The study also found that people who ate three to four servings of fruit, veggies and legumes per day had the lowest risk of premature death, and that five servings a day of these food groups doesn’t actually have any added health benefits.
So if you love eating fatty foods, don’t go overboard. If you don’t like fatty foods, then maybe it’s time to start thinking of new ways to incorporate it into your diet (hello, avocados). For all the pasta lovers, try to limit yourself to just one bowl a day.