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Diet & Nutrition > Butter or Marge?

Margarine use declines as Butter regains favour

butter1 A comparison of butter and margarine. We need fats, they are essential for health as they give our bodies energy and support cell growth. Fats also help our bodies by:

  • protecting our organs
  • keeping our bodies warm, especially in cooler weather
  • absorb some nutrients and producing important hormones, too.

Most foods contain some fat, even our veggies have a small amount, but we get most from meat and animal products, seeds and seed oils, and of course butter which was once blamed for the obesity epidemic.


Word has it that margarine was originally manufactured to fatten turkeys. When it killed the turkeys, the people who’d 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.  Margarine is a white substance with no food appeal so they added the yellow colouring and sold it to people to use in place of butter.

The obesity epidemic played into the hands of margarine producers who marketed it as a ‘low fat alternative’ to butter despite that both have the same amount of calories.

What do we know about marge?

  • It’s very High in Trans fatty acids.
  • Triples risk of coronary heart disease. ( Eating margarine can increase heart disease in women by 53% over eating the same amount of butter, according to a recent Harvard Medical Study.)
  • Increases total cholesterol and LDL (this is the bad cholesterol) and lowers HDL cholesterol, (the good cholesterol).
  • Increases the risk of cancers up to five times.
  • Lowers quality of breast milk.
  • Decreases immune response.
  • Decreases insulin response.
  • The chemicals called emulsifiers which are used to make margarine smooth can disrupt the vital healthy balance of bacteria living in our gut.  This can inflame the intestine, which raises our risk of developing inflammatory bowel disease, according to a study in the journal Nature. Worse still, Georgia State University researchers have found the inflammatory disruption can also lead to people piling on dangerous levels of weight, raising their risk of heart disease and diabetes – the very illnesses we have spent decades trying to avoid by ditching butter for marge.
  • It does not rot or smell differently because it has no nutritional value; nothing will grow on it.
  • Margarine is but ONE MOLECULE away from being PLASTIC… and shares 27 ingredients with PAINT. Would you melt your Tupperware and spread that on your toast?

These facts alone are enough to make anyone avoid margarine for life and anything else that is hydrogenated (this means hydrogen is added, changing the molecular structure of the substance).

Having Worked at Unilevers Premier Margarine Factory in the UK for 1 Year, as a Management Trainee, and then in Sri Lanka Managing Margarine Manufacture, I can safely admit that what you are about to read is true !” ~ Allyn Mackrory

“A study in the British Medical Journal three years ago showed that middle-aged Australian men who had followed health advice and eaten margarine instead of butter actually had higher death rates. One explanation for this is that the oils in their margarines were high in omega-6 fatty acids. These actually displace heart-healthy omega-3 fats from the body. Moreover, high levels of omega-6 fats in the body can cause inflammation, which may, in turn, cause cardiovascular disease.

And last year, a major review of research evidence in the BMJ journal Open Heart& overturned 30 years of health advice telling us to avoid butter and full-fat milk. The official advice – that we should cut our intake of saturated fats, such as butter, to only 10 per cent of our daily diet – “should not have been introduced”, experts said. Such revelations have prompted a renaissance for butter.” ~ John Naish

The real thing!

Butter is a solid dairy product made by churning fresh or fermented cream. Milk, cream and butter can be made from the milk of most mammals, but typically butter is derived from cows milk. The cows are milked and the milk solids separated out from the milk and the thicker one is cream.

The cream is then churned, you can try this at home; buy a bottle of cream, let it age a day or two, then beat as if making whipped cream and continue the whipping/ churning until it turns to butter. At the start of the process, add a little salt and you’ll get real butter plus a watery substance (whey) that can be discarded. To remove all the whey, put your butter in a clean cloth and squeeze out the whey.

So butter is pure fat – but we need fat in our diet and as long as you don’t eat too much, it won’t make you fat.

The differences between margarine and butter?

  • Butter is slightly higher in saturated fats at 8 grams; compared to 5 grams for margarine.
  • Eating butter increases the absorption of many other nutrients in other foods.
  • Butter has many nutritional benefits where margarine has a few and only because they are added!
  • Butter tastes much better than margarine and it can enhance the flavours of other foods.
  • Butter has been around for centuries where margarine has been around for less than 100 years.

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.



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