Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Margarine, or butter?

I just read an article that answers the question, Which is better for my heart: margarine or butter? That topic has come up here before, so I thought you all might be interested. My dad says butter is better; we have an indian friend who swears margarine is better. Mom and daddy did a comparison once between an olive oil spread, and two other spreads (maybe butter and margarine? do you remember mom?) and the olive oil spread was better in every category, I think (cholesterol, salt, flavor, fat,....I think those were the categories). One thing this article says is that generally, margarine is better, but that some margarines are worse than butter. It says that the stiffer the margarine (like, the stick kind), the worse it is for you. So maybe the stuff in the tubs is best.

9 comments:

Becca said...

Margarine. Bah. I'll take butter over margarine any time.

Margarine has trans fats, which have been shown to be really bad for the heart. Plus, the process it goes through to stabilize it into a solid at room temperature include chemicals that I can barely pronounce, much less want to ingest.

At least I know exactly where butter comes from and how it's made. I can't say that for margarine. Once I tried to make a buttercream icing with margarine (not really knowing a lot about baking at the time) and that icing broke and ran off the cake in a gluey mass that looked like the Exxon Valdez had struck the baking dish!

It wasn't good.

I would say for more info, check out Good Eats Fan Page. The guy there does full transcripts of Alton's shows--look for The Case for Butter. AB covered the difference in great detail.

Geron said...

butter is much better for cooking i think. I keep both in my fridge. some recipes that call for butter you can not substitute butter. and vice versa.


one other important thing to realise is that margarine has a much higher smoke point than butter. butter can burn relatively easy when cooking, where margarine can be heated much higher before burning.

Tara said...

I usually only buy butter, for the most part. We always had marg when we were growing up. I had butter at an event, and it is something I will not compromise on! Yes, I have marg in the fridge too, it is great on grilled cheese! :)

Tooz said...

Myself? I prefer lard. Yes, lard sandwiches. Quite a delicacy. Just ask your Aunt Caroline. Love you.

annalu alulu said...

my mom's silly. ghee has a higher smoke point than butter, (though it is butter), but I haven't bought any yet. looks gross to me. anyway, i hear that standard oils also have trans fats, because of the way they're produced--cheaply. so they say you're supposed to get fancy oils like safflower oil, and that most oils should be kept in the fridge, except olive oil, which solidifies, but you can keep it in a mason jar and spoon out how much you need and it'll quickly come to room temp, but anyway, i'd rather not think about all this stuff. Maybe in my late thirties I'll start thinking about heart-health. But probably I'll still be eating Nerds from a cereal bowl and saving part of my cookie dough when I make cookies to eat with a spoon.

Just Julez said...

I vote for butter. I simply think it tastes betterand like others said, I'm not fond of something loaded with chemicals.

I admit tho, when time is an issue, squirty margarine works better for grilled cheese.

Suze said...

i love using ghee!

Becca said...

Isn't ghee clarified butter with the solids and water boiled and strained out?

Tooz said...

Ghee is what happened when the tigers chased each other around the tree (Sambo). When they had all turned into ghee, Sambo got his parents, Mambo and Jambo, and the parents took the ghee home and made pancakes--probably dosas.