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This Butter Option May Now Be the Healthiest, New Study Says

An FDA ban is changing the game for margarine and trans fats.
FACT CHECKED BY Kiersten Hickman

It's safe to say that people have been wary of using margarine for quite some time. But the debate of using margarine versus butter has become a bit more complicated. According to a recent study from Public Health Nutrition, newer versions of margarine may now be the healthier option over butter.

In 2015, the FDA formally determined that partially hydrogenated oils—which are very heavy in trans fats—can no longer be agreed upon as entirely "safe" to put in your food. Because of this, these synthesized trans fats were banned from being put into U.S. foods.

This is where the view on margarine begins to shift. Before the ban, it was almost guaranteed that your margarine would contain these oils. But after the ban, recipes began to change.

Margarine stick

In the report, current forms and brands of margarine were examined to determine their possible health risks or benefits. The researchers concluded that margarine was found to be "better aligned" with health guidelines, especially in relation to cholesterol, than regular butter.

These findings are surprising and could shape the way margarine or butter is perceived in the future. However, it's important to remember that even though margarine has become the "healthier choice," it should still be consumed in moderation.

Cecily Weber from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health told U.S. News & World Report, "while margarines are a better option than butter for heart health, they should still be eaten sparingly, as they do still contain some saturated fat and have a high energy density; that is, they contain a high amount of calories per serving size."

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Samantha Boesch
Samantha was born and raised in Orlando, Florida and now works as a writer in Brooklyn, NY. Read more about Samantha