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Weight-loss expert champions low-carb, high-fat diets: 'Saturated fat is good'

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Nutrition expert Dr. Jonny Bowden joins a growing list of prominent medical experts to champion the benefits of a low-carb, high-fat ketogenic-style diet for weight loss and optimal health.

Dr. Bowden says dietary fat has been wrongly blamed as the cause of obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol and heart disease for the past 40 years.

“I think the notion that saturated fat and cholesterol are the demons in the diet is 100 percent wrong,” he said in an exclusive interview.

“When you look at the data, it’s very clear: Most of what we’ve been told about saturated fat and cholesterol is simply not so.”

According to Bowden, there's no scientific evidence supporting the widespread belief that eating fat makes you fat or fuels degenerative diseases.

What fuels these illnesses is inflammation — which is caused by a high-carb diet — especially one high in sugar, said Bowden, author of Living Low Carb: Controlled-Carbohydrate Eating for Long-Term Weight Loss.

“The irony is that the foods we were taught are good for us — breads, cereals, pasta, rice, potatoes — are the very ones that are killing us. Our bodies convert these foods to sugar almost instantly. Sugar raises insulin, which causes inflammation, which is the fundamental cause of heart disease.”

Bowden said eating a diet high in healthy fats such as olive oil, whole eggs, Malaysian palm fruit oil, grass-fed beef, and pastured butter not only accelerates weight loss, but reduces inflammation.

Bowden is not the only health expert who shares this opinion. In October 2013, cardiologist Aseem Malhotra rocked the nutrition world with his declaration that unprocessed saturated fat is good for you.

In his research, Dr. Malhotra found no evidence that a high-fat diet causes heart attacks, obesity or diabetes. If anything, he said consuming healthy fats helps protect against these diseases.

Similarly, Dr. Eric Westman, a nationally recognized obesity expert, underscored that a high-fat, low-carb ketogenic diet not only produces rapid weight loss, but also combats epilepsy and reverses type 2 diabetes.

Dr. Westman, author of A New Atkins for a New You, is pleased that mainstream media is finally dispelling the myth that eating fat makes you fat and sick. To the contrary, he said: Eating fat makes you skinny and healthy.

Neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter, author of Grain Brain, told me the high-fat ketogenic diet prevents — and in some instances reverses — Alzheimer's disease and ADHD. "Carbs are devastating for the brain," said Dr. Perlmutter. "Even slight elevations in blood sugar have been shown to increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease."

Dr. Jeff Volek, author of The Art and Science of Low-Carbohydrate Living, told me the ketogenic diet reverses type 2 diabetes, prevents heart disease, and accelerates weight loss without hunger. "There are very few people that a ketogenic diet could not help," said Dr. Volek.

Even Dr. Mehmet Oz, a longtime proponent of a low-fat, high-carb diet, has conceded that a high-fat, low-carb diet can prevent and even reverse diabetes, Alzheimer's, and ADHD.

While this revelation may sound revolutionary, Bowden has been aware of the health benefits of dietary fat for years and is glad there's a growing vindication of this important macronutrient.

For people who want to lose weight without deprivation and enjoy optimal health, Bowden wholeheartedly champions a low-carb, high-fat diet.

“What a relief that you don’t have to suffer through one more tasteless egg-white omelet!" he said. "The advice to eat egg-white omelets is way past its expiration date.”

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