Margarine vs. Butter

Morning all,

This weeks #TrainingTips post is going to be looking into a battle that has been raging on for a while.

Margarine vs. Butter


But which one wins?  First of all lets take a look into each one separately.

Butter is a solid diary product made by churning milk to separate the solid from the liquid components.  Typically per tablespoon, butter contains 100 calories, 12 grams of fat, of which 7 grams are saturated, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 31 mg of cholesterol.  Natural source of vitamin A, E, K, D and is also a rich source of selenium.

Margarine is a semi solid spread and is usually a blend of butter and plant-based oils.  Typically per tablespoon, margarine contains 80-100 calories, 9-11 grams of fat, of which 2 grams are saturated, 1.5-2.5 grams of trans fat, 0 mg of cholesterol.  Margarine was developed to fill a scarcity of butter in the 1800’s and nowadays more companies are fortifying their spreads with more and more vitamins and omega 3 and 6 oils that claim to lower cholesterol.

The raging battle between these two comes primarily from the old assumptions that saturated fat is bad for you and the links to heart disease.  Now in previous articles I have shown you that saturated fat is not the enemy that people once thought.  That said people still find it hard to get to grips with this information and still get drawn in by clever marketing and consume lots of overly processed foods.

So back to the fight. 

Butter is classed as a natural product because it is minimally processed.  Margarine however, is a highly processed food.  As I’ve already said margarine is usually a blend of vegetable oils and butter, now vegetable oils naturally at room temperature are a liquid.  But your margarine spread is definitely not a liquid is it? and being on average 80% Vegetable oil how can this be?  Well veggie spreads gain their semi solid form due to the factory processing, added emulsifiers and variations additives.  This is often why margarine contains hydrogenated fat, now if you’re read my posts, you’ll remember hydrogenated fat or trans fats are not good for you.

There is lots of evidence that bolster both sides of this fight and in reviewing the research there is lots of holes and biases within each study.  So how are we meant to make true informed decision?

Margarine vs. Butter

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The answer, it’s hard.  My view, margarine was developed due to scarcity, well that scarcity doesn’t exist anymore.  I personally prefer the taste of butter and for me I’d rather eat natural produce rather than processed ones.  Some state excess amounts of saturated fat is bad for you, which it is, but consuming an excess of apples is not good for you.  So really, everything is moderation and don’t always believe what it says one the tin.  Clever marketing is one major cause to the increase in obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease in the world.


What do you have on your toast?  Are you tempted to change?

The choice is yours, have a great weekend guys.


Stay strong and live, love and laugh!






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