Dietary Saturated Fats and Health: Are the U.S. Guidelines Evidence-Based? Academic Article uri icon

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  • The last decade has seen nearly 20 papers reviewing the totality of the data on saturated fats and cardiovascular outcomes, which, altogether, have demonstrated a lack of rigorous evidence to support continued recommendations either to limit the consumption of saturated fatty acids or to replace them with polyunsaturated fatty acids. These papers were unfortunately not considered by the process leading to the most recent U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the country’s national nutrition policy, which recently reconfirmed its recommendation to limit saturated fats to 10% or less of total energy intake, based on insufficient and inconsistent evidence. Continuation of a cap on saturated fat intake also fails to consider the important effects of the food matrix and the overall dietary pattern in which saturated fatty acids are consumed.


  • Astrup, Arne
  • Teicholz, Nina
  • Magkos, Faidon
  • Bier, Dennis M
  • Brenna, J Thomas
  • King, Janet C
  • Mente, Andrew
  • Ordovas, José M
  • Volek, Jeff S
  • Yusuf, Salim
  • Krauss, Ronald M

publication date

  • September 22, 2021