Swedes eating more ‘bad fats’ in quest to stay slim

Retail trends show that Swedes are eating more dangerous fats than ever before as the movement towards Atkins-style weight loss regimes continues. According to the Swedish Food Retailers’ Federation (Svensk Dagligvaruhandel), sales of butter and other high-fat spreads were up 40 percent and nine percent respectively last year, while the sale of low-fat spreads fell eight percent.

Speaking to Dagens Nyheter (DN) newspaper, physician and LCHF (low carbs, high fat) advocate Annika Dahlqvist said the figures show that the popularity of diets such as Atkins and the Montignac diet has not yet started to wane. “The LCHF  train is moving forward and more and more people are changing over to that diet. Many have realized that the natural fat isn’t dangerous but good for us,” he said.

However, heart specialist Maj-Lis Hellenius told the newspaper that new nutritional recommendations for Nordic countries state that such diets are not necessarily healthy. “The new recommendations show more clearly that it is the quality of the fat which is important for your health. It is made visible that there is a difference between fats just like there is a difference between carbohydrates,” Hellenius told DN.

Irene Mattisson from the National Food Agency (Livsmedelsverket) also stressed the importance of eating the right kind of fat. “How much fat or carbohydrates you eat is of less importance. The important thing is that the fat should come from vegetables. It shouldn’t be full-fat dairy products or animal fat, and the carbohydrates should be from wholemeal, fruit and vegetables, not refined flour and sugar,” she said in an interview with TT.