Butter gets a bad rap, but in my book I’ll pick butter over margarine any day.
I used to buy into the ‘margarine is better than butter’ hype, but no more. Trans fat free and low in cholesterol spreads such as Promise and I Can’t Believe it’s Not Butter, Country Crock and a host of others have a long list of ingredients. Have you ever checked it out?
Here’s the list for Smart Balance Buttery Spread:
NATURAL OIL BLEND (PALM FRUIT, SOYBEAN, CANOLA, AND OLIVE OILS), WATER, CONTAINS LESS THAN 2% OF SALT, WHEY (FROM MILK), VEGETABLE MONOGLYCERIDES AND SORBITAN ESTER OF FATTY ACIDS (EMULSIFIERS), SOYBEAN LECITHIN, POTASSIUM SORBATE, LACTIC ACID (TO PROTECT FRESHNESS), NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVORS, CALCIUM DISODIUM EDTA, VITAMIN A PALMITATE, VITAMIN B6, VITAMIN B12, VITAMIN D, VITAMIN E (DL-?-TOCOPHEROL ACETATE), BETA-CAROTENE COLOR
You can find this listing on the Smart Balance website.
Now, I’ll go to my refrigerator and pull out a stick of butter and read the ingredients as follows:
Cream, Salt, Milk
I don’t know about you, but I’ll take the stuff I can pronounce over what I can’t any day.
Not only does butter taste better and makes things it interacts with taste better, but the ingredients are common every day ingredients. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have a spare jar of VEGETABLE MONOGLYCERIDES AND SORBITAN ESTER OF FATTY ACIDS sitting around on my pantry shelf.
The Healthy Goal
I know, I know, butter is full of saturated fats and its ‘bad’ for us. Well, since the goal is to make healthy choices one choice at a time, if given the option between margarine and butter, I choose butter (olive oil would be better, but that option is not on the table at this time).
So, if eating butter means that I have to make one extra lap around the block or vacuum with a little more vigor, so be it. I’d rather have cream, salt and milk in my system than the host of ingredients that are listed on the margarine label.
While doing a little research on butter, I came across this document entitled Ingredients for Margarines and Spreads. Not quite sure what it all means, but I know after skimming through the document, I’m even more adamant about choosing butter over margarine.