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The Difference Between Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil – Which is Healthier?


Difference Between Animal Fat and Vegetable oil – What is Healthier?  This is a question that came up in a discussion within my family group chat on Facebook.  My cousin was saying how my uncle used to cook with lard, and how the food tasted better.  I didn’t really think anything of it, just the usual jokes but then my sister, after commenting with sick emojis????, shared a link for a youtube video.

Not a pretty sight I know but this video actually caught my attention.  It says that with lard (and other animal fats) it is not only a high source of Vitamin D but actually better for your health than vegetable oils.  

Which, I’m not saying is 100% true (I don’t know for a fact) but what some users commented on this video did make me wonder.  One comment, for example, said that since the 1980s when the US Govt. recommended that people use vegetable oil instead of animal fats people have become less healthy.

More so, that there have been more people getting conditions such as diabetes and Alzheimers.   Which is true.  One report says that cases of diabetes have risen from 108 million in 1980 to 422 million in 2014.  

Alzheimer’s again has got worse from what I can gather but I wasn’t able to find anything from 1980.  The closest data I could find was that cases of dementia have gone from 20.2 million in 1990 to 43.8 million in 2016.  

Definitely a trend here but whether this is to do solely with people switching from animal fat to vegetable oil I don’t know.  A bit hard to believe, to be honest, but still I do believe there may be something to animal fats possibly being healthier.   

Why I Think This Might be a Good Point Though…

Several of my previous posts actually make similar points.  How since maybe the 1950’s people have got more unhealthy and I can see some parallels here most definitely.  In my last post about DMSO even, In that, I wrote about how people switching from manure to fertiliser over the years has led to the sulphur cycle breaking down.  

And I know this might seem off-topic but I found this interesting because we need sulphur in our body.  To detox from heavy metals and free radicals.  It is also essential for building and repairing damaged DNA.

Also, in one of my first posts about the Leptitox Detox Supplement, I wrote about how increased use of plastics was a likely cause of endocrine-disrupting chemicals affecting leptin activity, and was a possible cause for obesity.

So, maybe it is that the breakdown of the sulphur cycle, bio-contamination from plastics and let’s not forget as well – GMO’s, EDC’s Processed Foods, poor nutrition and a lot of other things.  To say that vegetable oil is the root cause of this problem may not be 100% true but it is definitely what I want to take a look at in this article.  The Difference Between Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil…

Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil:  Introduction

Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil:  Introduction

There is a kind of an elephant in the room here, I would say.  No pun intended.  When I think of Sunflower Oil, Corn Oil, Rapeseed Oil and other vegetable oils I think about GMO’s…

Not only this but there is all the stuff that these crops get sprayed with to keep away the pests.  You may be able to source more organic vegetable oil (I don’t know) that might be a solution but you DON’T really know what you’re getting most of the time (I think).

Whereas Animal Fats for example may eliminate this problem.   It is true that the living conditions of the animal beforehand may affect the quality of its meat and other products.  Not to mention that the animals may be fed GMO food on a consistent basis.  That is for sure – but by comparison, if we take a look at vegetable oil is it really that much better for our health?

I know there are some big aspects of farming animals that are plain wrong  – I remember Hugh Fearnley Whitingstall, the TV chef years ago exposing a lot of this going on.  So, I definitely get why people opt for a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle. 

Although I think that with meat and animal fat if you go to a proper butchers shop that only deals with small family-run farms then the chances of their products being GMO-free are far more likely.  GMO’s I could really go on and on about here but this is not the only factor about animal fats being more healthy… 

Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil: 
Why Animal Fats May Be Better!

Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil:  Why Animal Fats May Be Better!

One of the big arguments here in favour of vegetable oils is that animal fats such as lard are quite high in cholesterol!  You might hear about how bad cholesterol is.  The same mantra is repeated about how it causes heart disease and how you should cut it out of your diet as much as you can. 

But did you know that there is a healthy type of cholesterol as well?

Animal fat funny enough, as well as being high in Vitamin D, contains this healthy kind of cholesterol.  Which contrary to the above statement is actually good for your heart.  This information is mostly from the video above so please don’t shoot the messenger.  I have read it from other sources as well and here is pretty much what it says;  

“That lard and other animal fats such as tallow are a healthy combination of saturated, monosaturated fat, and don’t contain any trans fat”.

I actually bought a block of tallow (beef dripping) at the supermarket last night.  Never tried it before.  I would have got lard as well but was completely sold out!  Very surprising! 

Anyway, looking on the back of my block of beef dripping (tallow) out of 100g of fat; it is 57% saturated fat, 36% mono-saturated fat, and 3% polyunsaturates.  The other 4% it doesn’t say but already this looks a lot better on paper than what’s on the back of my sunflower oil.  I will come back to this soon.  For now… 

Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil:
Facts About Cholesterol and Heart Disease

facts about cholesterol

i.)  LDL Cholesterol and HDL Cholesterol…

So, animal fats are a good source for HDL Cholesterol, and LDL Cholesterol is a different kind.

But, If you are wondering what HDL and LDL means – OK;

HDL = High Density Lipoprotein,  LDL = Low Density Lipoprotein.  If you ever heard of liposuction this is not exactly the removal of cholesterol.  Lipo in Latin means fat.   Liposuction is the removal of fat.

So, cholesterol is basically another word for fat proteins.  I don’t know what this in Latin?

Anyway, HDL (the good type of cholesterol) works by absorbing the LDL (the bad type) and carries it away to the liver.  Where it is broken down and flushed out of our body.

So, right there that is one good reason to maybe opt for animal fat.  It can reduce LDL cholesterol levels but one question I have that you might wonder as well – “What about the Saturated Fat?”.

ii.)  Saturated Fat and Cholesterol

Above I mentioned on the back of my block of beef dripping (tallow), which I bought, the ingredients contain 57% saturated fat.  This is not really healthy (or so you would think) as it is high in LDL cholesterol.  Indeed, where I wrote above about doctors warning people about how high cholesterol can cause heart disease – this is true in one respect.  Saturated fat contains LDL cholesterol, and LDL cholesterol is not good!

Although, inside animal fats, because there is a good mixture of both good and bad fats these actually work together.  Saturated fat is actually essential for building and strengthening cells.  It works by building the walls around cells and although it contains LDL cholesterol this is transported away by the HDL cholesterol in the monosaturated fat.

It is this and the high levels of Vitamin D that make animal fats a much healthier alternative to most vegetable oils.  Not to mention the information which I will share below; 

Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil:
Why Vegetable Oils are Bad?

Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil: Why Vegetable Oils are Bad?

i.)  What’s Wrong with Vegetable Oil?

OK, now I’ve said about GMO’s being one possible issue with vegetable oil.  This is actually only the tip of the iceberg.  If you are anything like me you probably won’t want to use vegetable oils again after reading this.  

So, by vegetable oils, there are some exceptions – Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, Avocado Oil, and good quality Palm Oil are what you want to be looking for as either a vegan or vegetarian. 

There are others that are OK as well in moderation…  Ask me about these in the comments…

But the Vegetable Oils to avoid are as follows;

  • Rapeseed (Canola) Oil
  • Corn Oil
  • Soybean Oil
  • Peanut Oil
  • Sunflower Oil
  • Safflower Oil
  • Grapeseed Oil
  • Cottonseed Oil
  • Margarine + Butter Substitutes

ii.)  Why Vegetable Oils Are So Bad?

Where to start?  Looking further down the rabbit hole and I am kind of shocked.  Forgetting about the GMO’s for a second.  Here is Why Vegetable Oils are Bad?  Indeed, just the process of creating these oils and you begin to see what I mean…  

The whole process is just beyond abnormal.  To make Sunflower Oil for instance it is shocking how it’s done –

1# – You first take the seeds and heat them at a high temperature (very high) until they oxidize.  2# – Then add Petroleum Solvent to extract the oil, and #3 – Heat again with a type of acid called hexane (a by-product of petroleum and crude oil) to remove waxy solids. 4# – After add chemicals to improve colour and deodorize the oil to remove the horrible smell. 

Than 5# – If you wish to make Margerine hydrogenate the oil.  Simple!

iii.)  What’s Really in Sunflower Oil?

Now, already we have Petroleum solvent, Acid (look up Hexane) and other chemicals to change the colour of the oil + remove the horrible smell created from processing.  The result; 11% of saturated fat to 89% of? (it does not even say on the bottle I have at home).  Although from my research this is (I believe) a large percentage of it is polyunsaturated and trans fat.  

Artificial crap basically – if you look at the competition – lard or tallow the question mark is only 4% so at least you know mostly what you are getting.  But this is not all…

iv.) An Unhealthy Mixture…

This is the other thing high levels of PUFAs (Poly-Unsaturated-Fatty-Acids).  Highly unstable for one.  Can cause inflammation and worse still mutation because of the oxidative stress to cells.  

Our body actually needs a mixture of saturated and monounsaturated fat to rebuild cells and for the production of hormones.  Polyunsaturated fats are good for you in the right ratio but like the saying, “too much of anything can hurt you” that couldn’t be more true.

And as well as PUFAs Vegetable Oils also contain a large percentage of Omega 6 fatty acids.  Omega 3 you may have heard of and its health benefits.  Why it’s good to include fish oil in your diet etc.  This is true actually, and Omega 6 is good for you as well but NOT in the levels that are included in vegetable oils.     

Both Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids in unbalanced levels are bad!

Oh, and here is the other thing BHA (Butylated Hydroxyanisole) and BHT (Butylated Hydroxytoluene) are 2 artificial antioxidants found inside vegetable oils.  They are put in to stop the oil from spoiling too quickly.  More Frankenstein crap to avoid, and why you don’t want to come into contact with these compounds is a whole host of different reasons.  

Links to cancer, infertility, kidney damage, liver damage and a weakened immune system.  You really can’t make this up, but after all, again this is artificial crap so what do you expect?

My Final Verdict;

Simple YOU don’t have to choose animal fats.  You can go for Extra Virgin Olive or Coconut Oil but bottom line you should look to swap your ‘run of the mill’ vegetable oils and margarine for either the types of oil mentioned above or animal fat.  I will be cooking a roast tomorrow and the first time I will be using the beef dripping I bought.

Also, I still have a bottle of sunflower oil in my kitchen I probably will use this for the bottom of my cooking tray unless I get to go shopping before.  If this is the case I will be buying a bottle of extra virgin oil and I will probably just keep in case I have nothing else but after doing my research for this article I will never look at these vegetable oils the same again.  

As for margarine, I currently have at home a tub of ‘original flora’ – 100% natural ingredients.  It is made with a mixture of rapeseed and sunflower seed.  There is nothing natural about rapeseed it is a hybrid!  and is maybe the worst kind of vegetable oils.  So, after this is gone this will be it for me –  I’m not buying this anymore. 

Instead on my shopping list will be proper butter.  I actually might even make my own.  It is easy enough to do apparently plus It may even save me money in the long run.  Same with buying animal fat such as lard and tallow.  Will be interesting to see over the next few months no doubt.

Anyway, I hope this article has explained the Difference Between Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil well enough and has given you some food for thought.

If you would like to learn more I highly recommend this article;  The Ugly Truth: Vegetable Oils Are Bad



Lastly, before you go if you have found this information interesting, or helpful, or if there is anything I missed out your feedback is always welcome.  Any questions you have as well will try my best to answer.  You can do so in the comments section below or you can email me directly at alexc@dynamicideas4life.com. 

Also, if you like what you have read today and would like to stay up to date with new posts etc.  

You have a few options;

1# – our Facebook page
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The latter I usually send a new email with each week to let my subscribers know what is going on, and occasionally I also share things like free ebooks and discount codes so definitely check this out. 

Many thanks, and again I really hope this information has been helpful.

Yours Sincerely

Alex B. Chivers

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6 thoughts on “The Difference Between Animal Fat and Vegetable Oil – Which is Healthier?”

  1. Hey Alex. Very interesting article. To be fair I always thought that vegetable oils are healthy, and I am using them in my kitchen on daily basis. So your post Is eye opener for me, definitely going forward I will be using more Extra virgin Olive instead. Yet, its good to hear than butter is ok, its really difficult to imagine fresh bread with something different, Thank you for bringing this topic to my attention.

    • Hi Cogito,  If you are not vegetarian try using a mixture of animal fats and EV olive oil.  I don’t know how true all this is but it has me convinced.  It has been a bit difficult using butter as a spread instead of margarine but slowly finding ways around this

  2. Thank you for this eye-opening (and quite shocking) article!  We have been fed the tale that lard is bad for us but now I’m thinking back on all the other things we’ve been told are “bad” when they actually aren’t.  Eggs, nuts, bananas, cranberries…the list goes on and on.  Do you know where I can buy organic lard?

  3. Hi, thank you for sharing this great article on the difference between animal fats and vegetable oils, and I have also visited your website on a number of occasions but seeing you here and reading a lot about the difference between animal fats and vegetable oils is a very cool thing different from what I expected and it exists Positively.
    Thanks for posting this article. I’m glad you told me about him and I can still learn more about him too. It would be nice to see him show me ways to use extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil,. The good stuff is here Thank you very much for sharing all this stuff here. Really worth seeing

    • Hi Anas,  Honestly since writing this article I have made massive changes to my diet.  Animal fats I use to grease the pan and EV oil I will use also but not to the extent I used vegetable oil before as it isn’t as cheap.  Make sure you check the label before buying as some products mix with rapeseed oil etc.  Coconut oil I’ve not tried but have heard it can leave a taste of coconut behind which isn’t always good.


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