Butter is made by the simple act of churning cream.

Margarine is a fake food that originated in a laboratory as a result of food science. It commonly contains a lengthy list of ingredients, like hydrogenated vegetable oil and artificial colours and flavours, to control its taste, texture and colour. In fact, margarine is pumped full of artificial colouring agents so it looks yellow like butter (we’re so easily fooled).

There were once laws against dying artificial foods to look like natural foods. These days our governments are rarely bothered by chemically altered concoctions posing as food. We trust science now.

Enter the Heart Foundation of Australia’s latest health campaign (and corresponding beat-up run by Today Tonight earlier this week) – advising Australians to eat less butter and more margarine if we want to live longer.

WHAT? Eat MORE of a synthetic, processed unnatural food to be HEALTHIER?

It was only 60 years ago that western society first had margarine forced down its throat, told that it was “smarter” and “healthier” than butter. Until the same set of food scientists figured out that the hydrogenated oils in margarine were in fact evil trans fats (oops) and in a sudden about-face re-engineered margarine to be trans fat free. Sure, butter might have 20 times the amount of trans fat as modern day margarine – but it occurs naturally, just like it does in beef, and oh, breast milk.

In defence of margarine, it is often Kosher and animal-ingredient free versions are popular with vegans. But that’s all the love I have for it.

Humans have been eating butter for about 10,000 years, but it is only in the last 100 or so years that we have all been keeling over from first-world diseases like heart disease, type two diabetes and other obesity related illnesses. Is it just me, or does the concept of eating a genetically modified by-product of science, as opposed to something that has pretty much just come out of a cow and been stirred about a lot, absolutely nuts?

If too much butter is going to make you fat, or give you heart disease (along with all the other crap you stuff in your gob) just bloody well eat less of it. Margarine is nothing but a horrible side effect of a society that has had too much of a good thing, mindlessly following a bunch of scientists who engineer the food we eat in order to solve our Westernised health problems, only creating whole lot of new health problems on the way.

Butter, being a natural product that contains unique fats (all of which have a different effect on our bodies and not all of them are bad), has surely got to be a better option (flavour aside) than an industrialised, manufactured product. And, shock-horror, our bodies actually need fats! A crazy idea, I know, but all those different fats found in full-cream dairy, nuts and seeds, even oily-fish like trout or salmon - we need those to be healthy, happy, smart people.

We don’t need to eat 100 grams of butter every day, but a little bit is actually good for you. It’s pretty simple math. And that’s before you factor in all the chemicals you aren’t eating when you skip the margarine.

I don’t think eating well is rocket science, but I do think most people take the advice from health experts as gospel, indeed we certainly should be able to. Even if some of these experts may have a history of scaring us into changing our diets then back-pedalling as fast as they can when new and improved research comes their way.

So, Heart Foundation, how sure are you about this one, or should we take your advice with a grain of salt?

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    • Eric says:

      06:01am | 01/10/10

      Brilliant satire! You capture the essence of the loony anti-science crowd perfectly. The line about margarine being “genetically modified” was hilarious.

    • Reg says:

      09:13am | 01/10/10

      It has become rather difficult to define genetic modification Eric. Bananas and strawberries as we know them are both genetically modified. Then there are those delicious and expensive tomatoes that we of class have come to know and love. smile The plants are beautiful but not a flower in sight. I’ll send you some. Plants i mean. As long as they use rape seed oil to make margarine, my taste buds will tell me. It’s all in the breeding.

    • Samson says:

      09:19am | 01/10/10

      I don’t know Eric, it feels like genuine rage to me.  Then again I’m having trouble believing that anyone could be so burningly furious about something as terminally boring as margarine.

    • Kale says:

      11:53am | 01/10/10

      She did forget to mention the Monsanto Company in an ominous manner though, it’s an important feature of the genre she’s satirising. Really disappointing.

    • Duff says:

      12:26pm | 01/10/10

      “You capture the essence of the loony anti-science crowd perfectly.” 

      You mean like AGW denialists?

    • Eric says:

      04:38pm | 01/10/10

      People who worry about “chemicals” and “unnatural foods” should only eat raw meat and veggies.

      Any cooked food has undergone unnatural chemical changes, and thus should be Verboten.

    • Reg says:

      09:52pm | 01/10/10

      Eric, it is a scientific fact… smile that the most important step that cave-dwellers ever took was when they started cooking their food. It is well documented on many a cave wall that those who ate cooked food because stronger, and taller with better bones and developed greater resistance to disease.  The word is, irrefutable.

      The reason, as discovered by one of the brighter cave-persons was that the stomach could not access the vitamins and calories within the raw food.  Cooked food is far more beneficial than raw and undercooked food such as two minute vegetables, are still raw and largely pass without providing a benefit.

    • acotrel says:

      06:28am | 01/10/10

      As I understand it, adrenalin is changed to cholesterol by the liver,in stressful situations, when the fight or flight doesn’t occur .  The Heart Fpundation might do well to investigate the way workers are stressed in the workplace, and have nowhere to flee? Their mortgages and family hold then still, while they are steadily and deliberately stuffed!

    • Herb Holden says:

      06:52am | 01/10/10

      The problem here might be the superphosphated pasture the animals are fed upon,double the phosphate means super inflated cell structure. Have you noticed people are getting taller and bigger over the years,maybe because they are raised on food grown this way,so when you buy the butter,beef, and vegies you are buying artificial growth,it aint natural cell growth,it is super boosted,try organic,at least they prohibit super in their growing regime.

    • Nick says:

      07:39am | 01/10/10

      Super phosphate making cell structure larger?  Super conjecture more like it . I smell phosphate lying around somewhere that’s for sure.

    • Grand mere says:

      07:18am | 01/10/10

      Go Nola! The food thought police would have everyone eating margarine…...yuk….not me though! I endured eating margarine for the 12 years I was married, and it went when the husband did.
      So I got rid of 2 things which left a bad taste in my mouth!

    • T.Chong says:

      07:26am | 01/10/10

      I heard this rave , all most word for word, very recently on a syndicated radio program in rural nsw. Cant remember by who, but I hope the writer will give credit where , and to whom its due.
      As for the claims Nola, you saying the heart foundation is wrong ? You state that the more undesirable elements from margarine is removed, but then go on to deride its composition anyway?
      “sure, butter may have 20 times..of trans fats.,but it occurs naturally ” so thats alright.
      Not being asked to spruik for dairy producers, are you Nola.?
      Cant wait for someone to claim its unAustralian to buy marg, as it deprives battling farmers of revenue.

    • Nick says:

      07:35am | 01/10/10

      Ahhh yes, the “all natural fallacy”. Holding up science as something not to be trusted. Calling margarine “genetically modified” when it is no such thing.  What a load of rich creamery butter.

    • DougB says:

      07:40am | 01/10/10

      Hear hear Nola, I’m with you. Chemicals can not be that great for us, and I think natural is better, (in moderation) any day. The chemical process used to make the margarine ingredients all “blend” together is fairly intense and you have to wonder if the chemicals used are that good for us.

      The best test of all is a simple taste test.  I haven’t met a margarine that tastes nice yet.

    • Youdy beaudy says:

      07:42am | 01/10/10

      T Chong, Hey there. Margarine is only a couple of molecules off plastic. Well Yum Yum. It tastes like yuck and will poison you and do god knows what else when it gets in the gut. Butter is from the Cow and is natural and any silly person could work out that natural should be better than plastic. Lets hear it for the cows and say…MOOOOO.

    • coxie says:

      08:10am | 01/10/10

      If the above is such a worry, water is only one oxygen atom away from dissolving your insides.

    • Sean says:

      08:37am | 01/10/10

      What a genius you are Youdy beaudy. You should be a scientist with all that knowledge about chemistry. See my comment about nature below…

    • DougB says:

      08:38am | 01/10/10

      Hi Youdy - the story about Margarine is a molecule off plastic has been around for a long time, and while true, is actually true about many foods including natural ones.  It is an insignificant argument, you would have to find a way to polymerize the double bonds, and it would be extremely difficult to do so.

      I would be more worried about the hydrogenated fats caused by the process of making margarine, people are starting to research whether these are a hidden threat to our health and it appears they might be worse than butter.

      I’m a butter lover by the way.

    • Sean says:

      08:16am | 01/10/10

      So… Nola is inferring that things made in labs are bad for you, all chemicals are bad, and things that are natural are good for you? Hmm…
      Labs: antidotes, cures for diseases, improvements to life in general.
      Nature: all toxins, most poisons, AIDS, stillbirth, rape, incest, paedophilia, earthquakes, tsunamis, bushfires.
      Chemicals: Water, oxygen, proteins, sugars.
      Nature is just nature, both good and bad.

      There’s nothing wrong with not knowing- but that’s no reason to be scared.

    • brian says:

      08:24am | 01/10/10

      Surely this is satire. The tired argument that ‘natural is always better’ can be demolished in so many obvious ways I’m not going to even bother.

    • Sean says:

      08:33am | 01/10/10

      On a second look it COULD be satire. But many people out there won’t see it as such and will just go for the “Ewww… it’s not natural!” line.

      I think messages need to be a little bit more obvious- after all Nola DOES write seriously about food.

    • Thin-king Eater says:

      08:29am | 01/10/10

      Your comment:I gave up margarine for butter then I gave up butter for nothing.  Just the jam on toast and no butter needed.

    • Frances says:

      08:34am | 01/10/10

      Is this a satirical article or is it for real?

      As an Accredited Practising Dietitian, I find it pretty frustrating when people confuse the message for people. Lets keep it simple and based on the science, which currently shows that polyunsaturated fats (like in margarine) are healthier for your heart than saturated fats (like in butter). Science evolves and sometimes new evidence emerges which changes recommendations, but lets not overcomplicate things by ranting and raving and fear-mongering.

      A ‘genetically modified by-product of science’? Must be satire. If you hate margarine, then why not skip the spread altogether?

    • ibast says:

      08:36am | 01/10/10

      I work in the power industry, I’ve worked in Petrochemical and I’ve worked in heavy industry most of my life.  By far the most disgusting place I’ve ever visited was a margarine factory.  I will no longer eat the stuff, despite having been brought up on it.

      As to the heart foundation, it’s already been well established there are ways around their rules.  This is why certain fast food companies can make certain claims.  I take the heart foundation tick with a spoonful of salt.

    • DougB says:

      09:30am | 01/10/10

      Funny you should say that ibast.  Most Heart foundation “Tick” foods have way more than the safe amount of salt (sodium) in their ingredients.
      As a heart patient, we aim for foods that have 120mg/100g or less.  Most of the “Tick” foods can’t meet that.

    • Reg says:

      08:39am | 01/10/10

      I believe there is one US state in which margarine is coloured RED just so there can be no mistake. Good thing to. Having been around I can assure Australians that there is NOTHING ... yes…. NOTHING better than Australian butter.  But much worse than this, I believe that certain European butter manufacturers, actually build DOWN their product to meet the low standard of US butter. This certainly makes margarine more marketable in the US.

    • Reg says:

      12:01pm | 03/10/10

      Sorry if my best is not good enough Nick. We try. On the positive side, perhaps we should suggest that margarine be made with fish oil now that it has proved so advantageous.Unless the highly disdained rape seed oil (Canola oil) comes cheaper of course and without the problem of the fish smell.

      Fruit of the Sea Margarine ~~ Fruit of the Sea Spread.

    • murray says:

      08:40am | 01/10/10

      I’m not a fan of the Heart Foundation, and their earnest, judgemental pronouncements.  If this piece is the strongest argument against such pronouncements though, we are in big trouble – this has endeared margarine to me far more than a statement from the Heart Foundation ever could.

    • rebecca says:

      08:54am | 01/10/10

      KUDOS 2 U!!  I had an argument with someone on this topic 2 days ago.  Its intensely frustrating to hear ‘Magarine is better than butter because it hasnt got the bad fats”  when you can stick your margarine outside for months and it wont go off, and the flies dont even touch it.  THATS BECAUSE ITS NOT FOOD!!!!!!!!!!!!! I could melt down a takeaway container and i bet that doesnt have trans-fats either, doesn’t make it good for me though.  I’m sure the heart foundation might give it the tick though, because its not going to contribute to heart disease.  Might give you cancer though.  Where is the cancer foundation’s tick for all those carcinogen free foods? That would be interesting…..
      You dont have to be an organic lentil muncher to realise that just because society have accepted the hype it doesnt always make it good or right.

    • Sean says:

      09:38am | 01/10/10

      Amazing argument you have there… you can place various grains and nuts outside too and they won’t go off either- but they’re food.

    • Richard says:

      05:36pm | 01/10/10

      Ok, but rats and mice generally eat the same type of food as humans right? Well if you put a plate of butter in an empty garage next to a plate of margarine, the little rodents will eat up all the butter but leave the margarine completely alone. They know what’s good for them, anti-nature idiots who think they’re so smart because they believe in “science” could learn a thing or two too (if they weren’t so closed minded).

    • HappyCynic says:

      08:55am | 01/10/10

      Well it’s about bloody time someone came out to support the delicious, delicious butter.  I grew up on a dairy farm, where we made our own yoghurt, cheese, butter, had fresh full cream milk every morning etc.  The first time I tasted store bought milk (I was about 15 years old) I accused my host of watering it down despite the fact it was allegedly “full cream” as for margarine well even the best of it doesn’t compare to butter.

      The problem is (and this applies to low fat crap as well) because people think something is “healthier” they seem to assume it’s “healthy” and therefore they think they can have as much as they want.  It doesn’t change the fact that margarine, for example, is still around 80% PURE fat (same as butter but only lower in saturated fat) so having twice as much margarine equals consuming twice the fat.  Also people seem to forget margarine still contains around 40 to 50% saturated fat.

      Butter in moderation is fine, it tastes better as well.

    • Youdy beaudy says:

      09:02am | 01/10/10

      Hey, We’re all here aren’t we, having a good life contradicting each other on here, and one of the reasons that the Europeans and others survived for us to tell the tale is, that Milk products fed our Ancestors. I’m not complaining about that.

      I love Milk and the products that come from it. There are many good things in Milk products. Anyway I have just been informed by my good wife that they used Margarine to grease cars etc. Well that sort of tells me something else about it. Now the cows don’t give a shite and still continue to say MOOOO. They couldn’t care less. They don’t have yellow skin and Dead eyes like most of us. Their Babies drink Milk and grow up big and strong. I wonder what would happen to them if they were fed Plastic. OH, I’ll have to find a good thought to have about that one.

      God I wish the Mother Ship would turn up and save us all from this crazy world and all the crazies that live here. They have been running a bit late, held up by all the bullshit that is leaking out of this stupid planet. It’s been clogging up their landing gear. Hey we could tell them about the benefits of Margarine and give them a good lubricating.

    • T.Chong says:

      09:17am | 01/10/10

      You beady , you also familar with the claim cows milk is only suitable for little cows?  But good luck to you.
      Your post is a lot more entertaining than half of the misery- guts who rock up here ( myself included, occasionally, of course).

    • iansand says:

      09:28am | 01/10/10

      Europeans mutated a few (and only a few) thousand years ago to produce an enzyme that allows them to digest cows’ milk.  So cows’ milk is suitable for little Europeans as well as little cows (but not most humans on the planet).

    • Stickler says:

      10:06am | 01/10/10

      Unneccesary Capilisation Does Not Add Emphasis to an Argument, Youdy beaudy. A reasonable argument such as yours should indicate the author has a grasp of grammar, however complex this may seem.

    • Youdy beaudy says:

      01:23am | 02/10/10

      Hey Stickler, back to you. Re your telling me I have a problem with Grammar and unnecessary capitalization. Well that’s the way I write it and it’s fine for me maybe not for you. It’s not exacty bringing down the universe is it.!

      But I would suggest to you that you might have a look at yourself there old bean as you can’t even write the English language correctly and have difficulty spelling. Go and have a look at your comment. Good to stick it to me, The reason Capitals are used by me is to highlight a particular word. Always done it, what can I say. Language presentation changes all the time, has done for Thousands of years. Maybe we are victims of that. Do I need a priest to save me?.

    • JJJ says:

      02:17pm | 02/10/10

      Capitalisation Does Add Emphasis to an Argument

      A Short Essay by JJJ

      I don’t even think I need to go on. I have made my point. smile- to grammar. I agree with Youdy… this world is mad and so is everyone on it. Eat butter if you want people and eat margarine if you want - just do what makes you happy and justify it as you see fit.

    • iansand says:

      09:06am | 01/10/10

      Moderation in all things.

      While we are having a rant, could we have a go at the charlatans in the organic food industry?  Question 1 - Have you ever eaten inorganic food?  Although I did see something being sold as “organic water” recently, which caused me a mild amount of concern.

    • stephen says:

      11:07am | 01/10/10

      That’s my problem iansand : moderation in moderation, so’s I’m gonna take yer advice an’ get ‘moderated’ with beer this weekend watching a Magpie git squished !

    • Samson says:

      09:08am | 01/10/10


      A population of animals that has organised itself in such a way that someone like you is able to trade labour in ‘public relations’ and ‘freelance food writing’ for a stick of ‘all natural brand’ butter is the most artificial and unnatural construct ever to grace the face of this planet.  And it’s working out pretty well at the moment.

      I think you could use a lie down.

    • Reg says:

      09:34am | 01/10/10

      Oh I don’t know Samson, I reckon breast augmentation leads by a nipple.

    • Tom Daly says:

      09:09am | 01/10/10

      We are confronted every day with life and death decisions . It begins each day with the first slice of toast ,. Should I risk my life by smothering my toast with butter or margarine ?. Of course one should not discount the question which of the two go best with Vegemite ?.  I prefer the flavour of butter , yet love the convenience of the softness of margarine getting it into every corner of the toast , sometimes a chore with butter. When is butter not butter ? what is different in top of the range butter, to no frills generic butter.  It is obvious,
      top of the range is twice the price, is there twice the goodness or benefit ?
      I don’t know ? as I do not buy the dear one and have no intention to ever do so.  I have long ceased to believe statistics , on most things.  In saying this, I
      must admit I prefer butter , not just for the flavour , perhaps for it’s traditional
      status and becoming suspicious of the claims of the margarine usurpers.
      Could it be subliminely, I have never heard of Cholesterol killing cows so
      when ever possible , I will continue to ask someone to pass the butter !

    • bella starkey says:

      09:14am | 01/10/10

      This column is like something from ifyoulikeitsomuchwhydontyougolivethere.com.

      Infact i might send it in to them.

    • The Badger says:

      09:14am | 01/10/10

      Satire aside,
      We needed fats to fuel our engines when we had physical labour as an occupation.
      Nowadays, we sit on our butts moving a mouse around or shuffling paper. We hop in our car to drive to the corner milkbar (if there still are any). We sit and watch TV, eat plenty of fat enriched food junk and otherwise and years later wonder why it was us that got heart disease and have to pay for two seats on a commercial flight.
      I know this will get the dairy farmers organization up in arms, but maybe a little less butter and cheese in our diet is not such a bad thing

    • Nola says:

      09:30am | 01/10/10

      I’ll just interject very quickly, this is not my place to talk so I’ll keep it brief.

      “Laws to regulate labelling of GM foods vary.”

      ” Many foods on supermarket shelves contain imported GM ingredients. “

      “These foods include corn, soybeans, potatoes and canola.”

      “Imported soya from the United States - this is one of the main sources of GM ingredients in food sold in Australia since 1996. The soya has been genetically modified to be resistant to a herbicide. It can be found in a wide range of foods, such as chocolates, potato chips, MARGARINE, mayonnaise, biscuits and bread.


    • Lupita says:

      09:57am | 01/10/10

      Sure, marg may well be better for your arteries if you are at risk of their clogging. But the whipped oil and synthetic blend of mystery ingredients that is margarine may well introduce all other kinds of yucky things into your system.

      Heart health is the focal point for the nice folk at the Heart Foundation, but what about the other, negative, effects of margarine and its synthetic processed food peers? Which health organisation is going to defend us from that?? How about the Learn How to Eat Properly You Fat Bunch of Slobs Foundation? Or, Stay Away From Processed Foods You Ignorant Mass?

      I’m glad shows like MasterChef are contributing something positive to society. Here’s hoping that families who live on take-away greasefest products swap their zinger burgers for some home-cooked food, even if it is fried in delicious lashings of artery-clogging butter.

      (Disclosure: I am not a great believer in the advice of the Heart Foundation. I disagree that giving kids aged 3 low-fat dairy is a good idea. Kids come in all shapes and sizes, and some of them need to get as much fat into ‘em as you can cram into their banana smoothies.)

    • Jay says:

      09:58am | 01/10/10

      I think the heart foundation prostitutes itself. How much do the margarine companies pay for the tick?  I wouldn’t eat margarine if you paid me. In my opinion some of the oils (eg canola) in margarine are more harmful than butter.

    • Beagle says:

      12:39pm | 01/10/10

      Heart foundation giving Mc’Donald’s the tic was the last straw for me.

      Lost any credibility they had.

    • Nicole says:

      10:22am | 01/10/10

      Excellent piece Nola and so true. Does anyone remember that add where the little kid says to his(?) mum, ‘Where does margarine come from’ mum says ‘I don’t know. Ask your father, he’s the chemist’ ? That add says it all. Margarine is revolting, it’s nearly as bad as unsalted tomato sauce. There is no place for it in my house. Butter all the way !

    • Reg says:

      12:22pm | 01/10/10

      Bless my cotton sox, tomato Sauce! Tomato Sauce?  Witches’ brew of bad taste being compared with the delicacy of butter?.

      No-one has mentioned the awful soft spread butter that is a blend of butter and god knows what. I’m amazed that my partner forgoes the taste of butter just so it spreads easy.  It’s every bit as bad as margarine.

    • Peter Russell-Clarke says:

      10:25am | 01/10/10

      Butter Makes It Better!

    • T.Chong says:

      11:03am | 01/10/10

      “Goodday” PRC,  Like in “Last Tango In Paris”?  that type of better?

    • stephen says:

      11:40am | 01/10/10

      Well if he’s got a beard, he kin practise.

    • Dave Sag says:

      11:09am | 01/10/10

      Butter is better, naturally. grin

      Butter tastes better.  Things cooked in and with butter taste better.  Try making proper pastry with marge! Impossible.  You NEED butter (or even better Lard) to make decent pastry. A small dob of butter in your mashed spuds - awesome.  Marge? disgusting.  Why do people get so het up about butter?  Its not like you eat a kilo of it? If you are that paranoid I am sure you could also process oil into a form of ‘animal free’ cheese too.  wouldn’t that be yum.

    • HappyCynic says:

      12:01pm | 01/10/10

      Ewww your idea of animal free cheese is gross.

      I agree 100% with you.  Oh and substitute milk for cream in those mashed spuds as well for extra deliciousness smile 

      Also frying your morning eggs in a little butter (sunny side up) with a tiny splash of olive oil to prevent the butter burning, on top of buttered toast with grilled tomatoes, mushrooms and sliced sausages makes a luxurious breakfast that will cure any hangover you might have wink

    • mickijo says:

      01:49pm | 01/10/10

      Add a bit of butter,splash of milk,some finely chopped onion,handful of chopped parsley to your whipped spuds. Yum!

    • HappyCynic says:

      04:04pm | 01/10/10


      Chives will do both the onion and the parsley’s job for you.  Substitute your handful of parsley and handful of onion for 2 handfuls of chives.  Add some cream as well smile

    • Scotchy says:

      11:24am | 01/10/10

      Good food (and bad) in moderation and sensible excercise plan all work hand in hand to keep us healthy, well it works for me, so I wont debate the merits of Butter/Marg.

    • davo says:

      11:48am | 01/10/10

      Am I correct in recalling that the French eat a LOT of butter? I don’t think it bothers them too much
      Margarine is rubbish that is full of preservatives- our bodies cannot break down most of the crap that is in “food” these days, no wonder people are such a bunch of fatties.
      The easiest, and my proven, rule to follow is that if it was never alive dont eat it unless it comes straight from something that is. With the exception of cheeses, butter and yoghurt anything processed or modified is out (beer and wine aside) - its the best diet to follow and if you are looking to loose a few extra pounds your body will do it all for you, no exercise required.

    • HappyCynic says:

      12:11pm | 01/10/10

      Ah the French Paradox.

      You know what the secret is to the French diet?  Smaller portions eaten over a long time.  The French get 2 hours minimum to eat lunch at work, most get 3.  They sit down in a restaurant and eat properly.  Fastfood in France is for the tourists, most French people sneer at places like McDonalds (and they’re very good at sneering).  Italy as well has a similar habit of refusing to accept quantity over quality.

      Jamie Oliver once noted that even the poorest Italian will cook using better quality ingredients than the richest people in England do, I’ll bet the same would apply to Australia.

    • stephen says:

      12:29pm | 01/10/10

      Food is energy. It goes in one end and comes out t’other. If the French wanna sit on there backsides (and they may have small bellys, but that butters goin’ ter their butts), and have a three hour lunch n’ with snails on toast with cream, well us westies got better things ter do.
      Yer eats so’s yer can do things. Only cows n’ other quadrapeds worry so much bout what goes innyer gut.

    • HappyCynic says:

      03:38pm | 01/10/10


      You’d be right about the butter going to their butts except the French have one of the lowest rates of heart disease and obesity in the developed world so there wink

      And do you really have better things to do?  I don’t know about you but I could find time for a 3 hour lunch because eating beats working smile

    • Youdy beaudy says:

      11:59am | 01/10/10

      Hey Sean, Well you are right, I’m not a chemist nor do I claim to be, so of course there are things about food chemicals that I am not familiar with of have knowledge of. So I note your reply not in a negative way for me. But on the other hand I have a very logical mind bent. “If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and waddles like a duck, then it must be a duck”.

      But I am now 65 years old and have very good blood pressure, good arterial systems and healthy internal organs. I get blood tests every 6 months to check, which is good for everyone as well. Blood tests tell a lot about our inner health as we know. My cholesterol Level is 4, which is well within the range for my age and very good in fact. So I have good health for my age.

      I have always eaten Butter, Cheese and drunk Milk and it forms an important part of my diet. As far as food goes i feel that if we eat it and the body feels energized then it must be OK for us. Now that is my simple idea on eating. I am quite aware of what to eat and what is healthy. Now I know for me that Butter is better and Margarine is not better and I can tell that simply by taste and how my body likes it, and I have to be the judge of that.

      I believe that with all health problems that arise in individuals that there is a lot of emotional content involved. For instance heart problems can be caused by emotions. Liver and Cancers by continued Anger and so forth. So it is not really clear cut to me about all these things they bring up saying that our traditional foods are bad for us. We can’t really generalize about it I feel.

      Eat what you want. All foods such as butter can give nourishment but modified foods not. I think health is really about a holistic approach where there is Balance in the Mental, emotional and physical systems that we have. Many people are ill because they suffer from stress which places difficulty for their lives and can prevent the inner organs and arterial systems from operating properly and in balance. I agree also with some of the punters who write here as well and I am not against what they write even in criticism. We are not always right in our assumptions. I can accept that.

      Before they stuffed up the Dairy industry you could go to the Dairy see the cows and buy your lovely cream filled milk straight from the farmer, it was delicious, but then they decided that all cow milk could have TB and then they made it illegal to buy from the farmer and then further processed the Milk. One lady wrote above about being brought up on a Dairy Farm and how good it was to have the milk products to consume and gave a positive indication.

      They do fiddle around with our foods, most of them, and if we saw some of the farming methods such as how they grow Sugar Cane and what chemicals they spray into the ground and over them well we wouldn’t eat anything. If people have allergies and heart problems are a source of concern, well one of the best foods to eat is Brown Rice.

      Anyway I think I’ve raved enough here and said my piece on it. Let us just enjoy our traditional foods and stop worrying all the time, because worry will bring the ill health and the Grave yard closer. I wish you all a good healthy life. Reduce your stress levels and health will improve, there is no doubt about that.

    • Eric says:

      04:35pm | 01/10/10

      Youdy, it’s very obvious that you are not a chemist - but that is not what others are objecting to.

      It’s the way you bang on about “chemicals”, when you clearly have not the faintest idea about what a chemical actually is, that gets up people’s noses.

      You have a right to be completely ignorant, but if you broadcast your ignorance in public, you should expect to be corrected.

    • Sean says:

      04:51pm | 01/10/10

      Youdy beaudy, you seem to have a fairly good grip on the “inner self” (if not the Use of Capitals), and I’m not about to deny that inner health can vastly affect your outer health. And you definitely seem to be a healthy specimen of your age. But scientific advice isn’t based on one person- it’s based on trends in data gathered from many people, so that the advice is best suited to the majority of people. So the “my grandfather who lived to 98 smoking all his life” story is worthless evidence when it comes to advice on smoking, or more to the point avoiding advice.
      If everyone else had the same mental attitude as you, perhaps we’d be healthier, but science is based on the average person.
      On topic- butter isn’t unhealthy- just LOTS of butter can be unhealthy. Just like many things- even water.

      One of the sad things about forums like this is that many people are happy judge about what they don’t know, rather than go and find out.


    • Richard says:

      05:54pm | 01/10/10

      Those were some wise words Youdy beaudy, you’re philosophies on health sit well with me, especially regarding the impact of emotions on physical well-being.

    • Grumpy says:

      12:05pm | 01/10/10

      Chemicals are bad, mmmmkay,

      Some of you might have heard about this particular chemical,called dihydrogen monoxide. Some say its safe as long as its used carefully, it has even been said to be essential to life, but people who say things like this can’t be believed.

      For example, if you leave dihydrogen monoxide on metals for a time, they corrode much faster than if they are not exposed to it. (Even more so if the dihydrogen monoxide is mixed with sodium chloride, which is another stinker!)

      In addition, dihydrogen monoxide stimulates the growth of bacteria in otherwise clean environments.

      In its gaseous form dihydrogen monoxide can cause bad burns (many children are injured this way every year).

      It is also fatal to humans if inhaled.

      This is clear proof of the fact that chemicals are inherently bad for us - we should ban all chemicals.

    • Kate says:

      03:19pm | 01/10/10

      It’s scandalous that the government isn’t doing more about DHMO. Visit http://www.dhmo.org to find out just how nasty and ubiquitous it is.

    • Ben Gray says:

      12:08pm | 02/10/10

      Dear Godsss!
      The fact that DHMO is still not banned is proof that the government is run by freemasons trying to kill us all. It’s in the stuff we eat, it’s in the things we drink, yet as you say, if you inhale it, you’re dead. It’s a SCANDAL!

    • Reg says:

      06:48pm | 02/10/10

      Strewth, I need a drink after that Kate. No, maybe I’ll settle for lashings of cold tasty butter between a thick layer of Vegemite and fresh wholemeal bread.

    • Steely Dan says:

      12:26pm | 01/10/10

      Hurrah for the naturalistic fallacy!  Down with health!

    • emma says:

      12:26pm | 01/10/10

      More nannies telling us what to do. I eat butter and I don’t care what the heart foundation thinks. Happiness is the meaning of success, and marg will never make me happy. It’s my life and I am over being told what to do.

    • Steely Dan says:

      03:39pm | 01/10/10

      @ emma

      Personally, I’m over people complaining every time someone suggests a way to improve their health and well-being.  Nobody’s forcing you to stop eating butter.  If the Heart Foundation found out that margarine was better for you, they’d be idiots not to pop the information onto their website or into a press release.  Presumably you don’t run out of the room screaming ‘this isn’t North Korea’ if your GP recommends a new diet or exercise regime, so I don’t know why people get up in arms when NGOs make a similarly non-enforceable recommendation.

      But as you said, it’s your life, and nobody can stop you from whining.

    • Randal says:

      03:58pm | 01/10/10


      The only whining was from your post… “how dare emma take offence at someone telling her what’s good for her” you say..

      As for the Doctor jibe, I cannot speak for Emma but I know if my Doctor started telling me what to do in life without good bloody reason I would tell him to go jump in the Lake.

      Emma is saying what most Australian’s believe, leave us alone, and let us eat what we damn well please without the fun police running yelling at us “It’s for your own good”...

      So stop bloody whinging Steely and leave poor Emma alone, she just wants some butter on toast without some pain the backside like you trying to make her feel guilty for enjoying it.

      Now bugger off back to your lentils and seaweed soup and leave the rest of us alone to enjoy the indulgences that life offers.

    • Kate says:

      06:38pm | 01/10/10

      @ Randal: you appear not to appreciate the distinction between “giving people information” and “telling people what to do”. Which is intriguing, because the distinction isn’t even subtle, it’s quite obvious.

    • Steely Dan says:

      07:09pm | 01/10/10

      @ Randal

      “The only whining was from your post… “how dare emma take offence at someone telling her what’s good for her” you say..”
      That’s right, I am whining about it.  With good reason.  Somebody’s trying to help her be healthier and that’s her response? 

      “I know if my Doctor started telling me what to do in life without good bloody reason I would tell him to go jump in the Lake.”
      Me too.  Four important words in your sentence saved you from sounding stupid:  ‘without good bloody reason’.  I saw no reason - good, bloody or otherwise - in emma’s whining.  She’s not even assessing the claim of the Heart Foundation to see if margarine is healthier than butter, she’s just whining that they’re ‘telling her what to do’.  That’s unreasonable.

      “Emma is saying what most Australian’s believe, leave us alone, and let us eat what we damn well please without the fun police running yelling at us “It’s for your own good”...”
      Ah, the ‘food police’.  Just like the real police, except they don’t have uniforms, patrol cars, weapons or the power to do anything other than give recommendations.  A tyrannical lot, those food police.

      “...leave poor Emma alone, she just wants some butter on toast without some pain the backside like you trying to make her feel guilty for enjoying it.”
      Who’s making her feel guilty for eating what she wants?  If emma’s feeling guilty because she’s eating something, that’s for her to sort out.  Letting people know what the healthy options is a good thing, should the Heart Foundation ignore facts and tell us that only emma’s favourite foods are healthy so they don’t offend emma’s delicate sensibilities?  Nobody’s forcing her to do anything.  Information and oppression are not synonyms. 

      “Now bugger off back to your lentils and seaweed soup and leave the rest of us alone to enjoy the indulgences that life offers.”
      No, I’m going to have a delicious beer and some pasta.  But I’m not going to have 47 beers and all my cold and flu tablets, because thanks to the research of the ‘drug and alcohol police’ I know for a fact that’s bad for my health.  And I don’t think these or any other facts are oppressive, like emma and yourself.

    • Emma says:

      10:11am | 05/10/10

      @ Steely Dan, my problem is not with people trying to offer information. It is the forceful tone and language, its the fact that policticians actually make desicions based on information gathered from these experts.
      Lastly it is the repetition of the information.  I have received the information and ignored it as an informed choice. Why then do experts feel the need to repeat themselves? When spouses do this it is called nagging when experts do this it is called informing the public.
      I don’t feel guilty for eating butter. I feel angry someone is so egotisitcal that they think I want to hear their opinion repeatedly.

    • Steely Dan says:

      11:43am | 05/10/10

      @ Emma

      “my problem is not with people trying to offer information. It is the forceful tone and language”
      What forceful language did the Heart Foundation use?  Have a look at their media statement.  It’s on their website, release date 27th September.

      “...its the fact that policticians actually make desicions based on information gathered from these experts.”
      I don’t have any problem with the government considering health when legislating.  And I haven’t seen anything to indicate that any legislation is likely to be made or amended as a result of the HF’s statement.
      “I have received the information and ignored it as an informed choice. Why then do experts feel the need to repeat themselves?”
      Because not everybody heard it the first time.  I don’t think that the information in the statement is something you would class as ‘common knowledge’.

    • acotrel says:

      01:24pm | 01/10/10

      Food Standards Australia - that must be a really active organisation considering the garbage on the shelves of our supermarkets? I wonder if they consult with the NH&MRC;, and the Heart Foundation?

    • Carl Palmer says:

      01:28pm | 01/10/10

      Wherever possible I keep away from both, though if I had to make a choice between the two, I go for butter.

    • mickijo says:

      01:40pm | 01/10/10

      Once knew a lady who’s son was manager of a well known margarine manufacturer,she told me never ever buy marg. Marg never comes into our house, butter forever!.I always insist that the butcher leave the fat on steak, chops, ham. It is the best bit , none of us arer obese,we just like real food.

    • Randal says:

      03:32pm | 01/10/10

      Amazing really that we are told daily, don’t eat this or you will drop dead… Obesity is killing us we have to ban, warn do something, yet we live longer and longer and longer… Last I saw on the population data our problem is we are living too long for a ‘sustainable’ Australia, not that we are all dropping dead from eating butter… Yet that’s not enough for the ‘for your own good brigade’...  Hell NO, they want war and peace on the Hamburger wrapper, fat taxes on food they don’t like, junk food advertising bans, plain packaging for cigarettes, warning labels on alcohol, higher taxes - well on anything they don’t like…

      Enough is Enough!

      I say eat what you like and do what you want, don’t like butter well don’t eat it, but for the love of God let the rest of us enjoy a lashing of butter on toast in peace and your pain in the arse opinions over our ‘unhealthy’ culinary habits are not wanted nor required.

    • Ben Gray says:

      04:54pm | 01/10/10

      That was the most anti-science, idiotic and evidence-bereft pieces of crap excuse for a column I’ve ever read. And I’ve read Glenn Beck columns. The author should get a goddamn clue.

    • R says:

      06:00pm | 01/10/10

      Butter simply tastes better. But I also use mayo or avocado too.

    • Lee from WA says:

      06:41pm | 01/10/10

      I like margarine because butter goes hard in the fridge. Make butter so it doesn’t need an axe to cut it and I’ll buy it.

    • Vicki PS says:

      12:56pm | 02/10/10

      Gee, it’s a wonder no-one has thought of that.

    • Reg says:

      09:45pm | 02/10/10

      Actually the butter compartment in a fridge door does this very well. Even though the ice cream in the freezing compartment is a bit too hard but it’s like chocolate, they put additives in ice-cream to stop it going so hard. You wouldn’t want that in butter though. So they use oil blends. Dreadful stuff.

    • Christine Coleman says:

      01:12am | 02/10/10

      It’s journalists like this that need to go to university and do a Science degree before influencing others with their ignorance. You know what “natural” food is made of? Chemicals, the exact same chemicals produced by scientists, how do you think we get the instructions to make these “chemicals”, from nature. And another thing, “natural foods” have bad chemicals that will make us sick too. But because it’s natural, does that make them ok to eat? Yes, synthetic foods can be bad for us, but the fact it’s not “Natural” has nothing to do with it!

    • Anjuli says:

      12:11pm | 02/10/10

      they say a little bit of what you fancy does you good the leading word is LITTLE , I only put honey on my small slice of grain bred after honey in my porridge. No butter no margarine I do however very rarely use butter in some of the cooking. My mother use to love butter I remember how thick she used to put it on bread and scones then she died of hardening of the arteries at the age of 61. That is when I stopped eating butter or margarine it is 49 years ago now, when I do visit the doc he says my blood pressure is that of a 20 year that is without the aid of medication . Maybe it is just a co-incidence ,I hope not.

    • scientist says:

      02:20am | 04/10/10

      Where does the fact that cows are genetically modified (by us, over years of breeding) leave butter? Butter must be genetically modified too!

      I’m sick of the punch publishing the often dangerous opinion of every uneducated journalist out there. Just because you have an opinion, doesn’t mean it’s valid.

      If you want to ignore the heart foundation, by all means do. Darwinists will thank you.

    • Jaimes says:

      05:06pm | 04/10/10

      I personally couldn’t care less which is healthier - butter IMHO tastes better, and that’s why I prefer it. Now if I could just find a way to keep it soft in summer without it going off ... any tips on THAT, fellow punchers??

    • buigaxia says:

      08:29am | 13/04/12

      order an <a >hermes bags replica</a>  for less


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