Butter has long been labeled “bad for your health,” and when consumed in excessive amounts, it can lead to other health risks like weight gain and high cholesterol. But Patricia Bannan, a Los Angeles-based nutritionist and author of Eat Right When Time Is Tight, has suggested that a simple rule can help people keep enjoying the tasty goodness and still shed pounds effectively.
When used sparingly, Patricia explained, it could actually help a person lose weight.
“A little butter [could] encourage you to eat more nutrient-dense foods like vegetables,” she said.
“[So] It may be worth including in your diet.”
However, she cautioned that people need to be careful about how much they consume, stressing that portion control is key to weight loss success.
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Culinary nutritionist Sara Haas has found that nut butter can be a good substitute that doesn’t come with the risks that regular butter has.
“Nut butter is packed with healthy monounsaturated fats and tons of vitamins and minerals,” she explained.
The abundance of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats helps keep low-density lipoprotein cholesterol in check, and it’s packed with health-promoting proteins.
About 100 grams of peanut butter contains 25 grams of protein, while the same amount of regular butter contains only 1 gram of protein.
Other tasty fat alternatives include:
Sara said, “Hummus can be a great butter alternative.
“High in protein and high in fiber, chickpeas are its key ingredients, it has a pretty outstanding nutritional profile.”
She also recommended tossing hummus with a little olive oil and lemon juice for a delicious, butter-free pasta sauce.
Olive oil contains high amounts of antioxidants and has powerful anti-inflammatory properties.
Research has found that it is not associated with weight gain and obesity, and just one tablespoon of olive oil a day can contribute to many health benefits.
Avocado oil is high in oleic acid, an unsaturated fat.
It contains vitamin E and also helps the body absorb other fat-soluble vitamins.
Sara recommended mixing a small drop into mashed potatoes, omelettes, or muffins.