Butter has become a staple in almost every household right now. However, it has also become quite a topic of controversy. Some claim that butter is very unhealthy for your body as it can increase your cholesterol and block your arteries, while others disagree.
Thankfully, there were many researches conducted over the years to answer the question – is butter healthy? To save your time and to ensure that you actually get the right answer, we have conducted thorough research and compiled all the information within this article.
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A Little Bit about Butter
Tradition butter is basically a dairy product that is produced by separating fats and proteins that are found within milk or cream. The butter you will find in your local stores is mostly made out of cow milk, however, one can also make butter using buffalo, sheep, goats, or even yaks’ milk.
That being said, you can now find “non-dairy” butter options made with nuts and fruits such as almond butter, cocoa butter, and apple butter. While they have a resemblance to butter’s consistency, they aren’t considered to be butter literally.
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Types of Butter
Down below, we’ve listed the different kinds of butter you can find in the market:
Cultured butter, also known as fermented butter, is created using fermented or soured cream. The process is triggered by incorporating live bacterial culture such as lactic acid into the cream.
This allows the butter to get fermented and results in a sharper and tangy flavor. The bacterial cultures are also known as probiotics which are really good for one’s gut health.
Clarified butter is formed by heating cream or butter itself till it melts. Once melted, remove the remaining milk solids and water from the solution, which will leave you with pure, clarified butter.
Unsalted butter, which is also known as sweet butter, is made using fresh cream and the traditional manner. However, this butter is not made with any added salt or preservatives, which results in a fresher and sweeter taste.
Ghee is another form of clarified butter that is heated for longer. This results in the butter having a higher melting point and a nutty and toasty flavor.
In the following charts, you will find the nutrition information for consuming one tablespoon of both salted & unsalted butter.
1 tbsp of salted butter comprises:
- 0g (Carbs, Fiber, Protein, Sugar)
- 11g Fat
- 100 Calories
1 tbsp of unsalted butter comprises:
- 0g (Carbs, Fiber, Protein, Sugar)
- 12g Fat
- 102 Calories
In both salted & unsalted butter, you will find the following nutrients in reference to daily intake (RDI):
- 11% Vitamin A
- 2% Vitamin E
- 1% Vitamin B12
- 1% Vitamin K
- 3.4mg Calcium
Advantages of Consuming Butter
The following are the potential benefits of having butter be a part of your diet according to renowned research:
Rich in Nutrients:
Butter is full of rich nutrients such as calcium and vitamin D that helps to keep your bones strong. It also includes compounds that are linked with decreasing ones’ chances of obesity.
Helps with Fat Loss:
As butter doesn’t have any carbohydrate, it’s a great option to replace regular oil if one is aiming for weight loss or wants to enjoy a low-calorie diet.
High in Beta-Carotene:
Butter has high amounts of beta-carotene that the human body turns into vitamin A. The compound also is linked with lowering risks of prostate and lung cancer. More importantly, it helps to slow down the speed of vision loss and other macular degeneration.
Improves Your Skin Condition:
Thanks to the vitamin E present in butter, it helps to decrease the damage done from UV rays and skin inflammation. It also aids the process of skin wound healing.
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Disadvantages of Consuming Butter:
Here are the possible drawbacks of having butter be a part of your regular diet:
High in Fat:
Butter has an astounding level of saturated fat – 63% to be exact, while also containing 26% of monounsaturated fat and 4% of polyunsaturated fat.
While more and more research is coming up to debunk the risk of such fats. It still is known for damaging one’s heart. Hence, you should be careful of the amount of butter one intakes.
High in Calories:
Butter is packed with calories – going up to 102 calories per tbsp or per 14 grams. If one isn’t careful of their butter intake and does not incorporate exercises into their lifestyle – it is most likely to increase their weight.
How Much Butter Is Too Much Butter?
Nutritionists advice to consume no more than 10% saturated fat for one’s total daily calories. Thus, if you normally consume 2,000 calories a day, you should not have more than 3tbsp of butter per day.
Is Butter Healthy?
All in all, it’s safe to say that one can enjoy butter daily thanks to all the benefits such as lowering the risk of diabetes, obesity, and heart problems. That being said, the consumption should be in moderation as it’s high in calories and fats. So, it should be switched up with other healthy fats to maintain a good balance.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is the healthiest butter to eat?
Normally, it’s believed that clarified butter is the healthiest butter to eat. But even it has the usual drawbacks of butter.
Is frying with butter healthy?
Frying with butter is healthier than frying with sunflower oil. However, olive oil is the healthiest option for frying.
Is it unhealthy to cook in butter?
Butter isn’t the best option for cooking as it’s rich in saturated fat.
So, is butter healthy, and should you eat it? With all of its healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals, butter has a lot to offer – including a delicious flavor that can enhance any dish.
But remember to enjoy it in moderation – all things are good in small doses. And if you’re looking for a healthy alternative that still packs a flavorful punch, give olive oil a try.