The Heart Foundation’s Response to My Petition

Standard

Below is the letter from the Heart Foundation in relation to my petition requesting that they stop promoting margarine and processed foods.

Heart Foundation is blue, I’m red. Gotta say I was expecting more of an argument than this..

Hi Jessie

Thanks for getting in touch with us so quickly. We recognise that this is a subject that people feel passionately about and clearly it is one that the Heart Foundation and yourself disagree on.

We believe it is fair and reasonable that the Heart Foundation’s position is represented on the petition page.

The Heart Foundation recommends switching from butter to margarine as one way to reduce the amount of unhealthy saturated fat in our diet.

Our recommendations are based on good quality scientific evidence. The vast body of evidence shows that saturated fat raises bad cholesterol levels, clogs the arteries and increases the risk of heart disease. We need to reduce the amount of unhealthy saturated fat in our diet and replace it with healthier fats.

This really, really baffles me. Firstly there is absolutely no evidence that saturated fat causes heart disease so I don’t understand why they keep referring to saturated fat as unhealthy. It has also been shown repeatedly that higher cholesterol does not collerate with heart disease and in fact lower cholesterol is linked with higher mortality rates and a whole host of unpleasant side effects. Please read Zoe Harcombe’s brilliant response to this letter here.

The advice to move unhealthy saturated fat makes absolutely no sense.Here is a massive meta-analyses published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition that found no link between saturated fat and an increase of cardiovascular disease. Here is a another huge compilation of studies debunking both the saturated fat and cholesterol myths. Here is another fantastic and very well referenced article from Authority Nutrition outlining why there is NO REASON to fear saturated fat and another to show the many reasons we should avoid vegetable/seed oils. So you have as all replacing a perfectly healthy, natural fat with one that is man made and extremely damaging. Great…

We believe that the research on the health benefits of coconut oil is inconclusive, but we do know that coconut oil, milk and cream are all high in unhealthy saturated fat.

More like if you admitted coconut oil and it’s accompanying products had so many proven benefits based on peer reviewed research all your precious seed oil affiliates would go broke and your precious Tick of Approval would mean NOTHING. Again you are putting the word unhealthy before the words saturated fat- purely for fear mongering without providing ANY RESEARCH WHATSOEVER. Here is a fantastic site showing loads of research and news in relation to the benefits of coconut oil, including truly amazing discoveries like reversing Alzheimer’s. It’s a shame that this is completely ignored by a body like the Heart Foundation who could really be helping bring this great news to people. Here is another very well referenced article on the benefits of Coconut Oil.

We agree that trans fats are especially bad for your heart health, because they increase our bad cholesterol and lower our good cholesterol. It’s important to realise that there are naturally occurring trans fats in some red meats and dairy products, including butter.

It is a deep shame that you yourself have not taken the time to research the immense difference between naturally occurring trans fats found in red meats and dairy products- which are actually anti inflammatory and have cancer protective properties. Compared to artificial and very dangerous man made trans fats.

Here is a fantastic and disturbing extract from Cyndi O’Meara- Changing Habits report, Margarine, Fat Lot of Good it Did.

“A trans fat produced as a result of partial hydrogenation of a vegetable oil has devastating effects on the body including: increase in cancer, diabetes, and obesity, and an increased chance of heart disease. It has also been implicated in the increase in multiple sclerosis, learning dysfunction in children, and macular degeneration.

The health risks of trans fats have been linked to the following body systems: brain and central nervous system, hormone production, immune system function and cell membrane function. When trans fats make up the bulk of the cell membrane, cell function is badly disrupted in ways that are not fully understood. What we do know is that it changes the permeability of the cell membrane and disrupts the uptake of vital nutrients by the cell. Without the proper nutrients going into the cell, the cell is unable to make more cells (hair, healthy liver, heart and kidney cells), or create energy; it also affects many more processes vital for health and life.”

When looking at the fat content in butter, 50% is saturated and 4% is trans fat. In comparison, margarines with the Heart Foundation Tick contain a maximum of 28% saturated fat and 1% trans fat (and most contain only 0.1 or 0.2% trans fat). 

Again Cyndi O’Meara explains in her report that even a 2% increase in man made trans fats in the diet creates a whopping 23% increase in cardiovascular risk. “The latest evidence now points to the fact that there is no safe level of trans fats. So even if the Australian public, as deemed by Foods Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ), is eating just a small amount of trans fats, in my opinion it is still too much.”

Foods with the Heart Foundation Tick are a healthier choice compared with similar foods and have to meet our strict nutrition standards. Food companies pay a licence fee only once their product has met these standards. The Tick program runs on a cost recovery basis and the fees are used to manage the activities of the program, including random audits to ensure products meet our criteria.

This is really, really disappointing. The heart tick is marketed in such a way that everyone I speak to in the general public, PARTICULARLY the vulnerable and elderly who rely on the Heart Foundation’s ridiculous advice for their health. They are merely a ‘healthier choice’ compared to similiar foods which is a complete load of garbage as its all based on cash, smaller business who wouldn’t have the money for the Tick of Approval would miss out. Check out my post the Heart Foundation Tick of Death for a review of many of their products.

For more information, visit:

http://www.heartfoundation.org.au/healthy-eating/fats/Pages/butter-margarine.aspx

and

http://www.heartfoundation.org.au/healthy-eating/heart-foundation-tick/Pages/smart-shopping.aspx

Kind Regards,

Kerry

Have your say visit my facebook page and sign and share the petition.

33 thoughts on “The Heart Foundation’s Response to My Petition

  1. Rebel

    I totally agree with you Jessie, their response is very frustrating. I really despise the advertisements on TV that portray margarine as natural with their pretty flowers. I’ve been inside an seed oil factory and the process is absolutely disgusting and the smell is revolting. I love that old ad they used to have with the woman making butter in the kitchen with her child and the child asks her how do they make margarine and she says I don’t know darling ask your father he is the chemist!

    • Lol I’ve never seen that advertisement! Sounds awesome and hilarious. Yeah it is disgusting, please share the petition with everyone you know. Let’s get it going seriously viral!!

  2. Courtney

    When I first learned about the margarine-making process, I went straight home, threw the margarine in the bin and told my mum we were only eating butter from that day on. My family and I never have never touched it since. Our cholesterol levels, heart health and body fat have not been adversely affected at all. Go figure!

  3. Their response scares me – how a company with so much power can be so misinformed. You only have to speak to a Nutritionist or Naturopath to understand the gravity of this situation. Not only does margarine contain trans fats but they need to use very harmful heavy metals in the production, and the result is very damaging to our health. We have long since known that the food industry cares nothing for our health, so lets keep fighting!

  4. thanks so much for starting this petition, it is really sad to see the response, they are just repeating the same rubbish and not bothering to keep up with the research. I have to think that food companies have a big influence on what gets the “tick”.

  5. Carol Letcher

    margarine is one molecule away from plastic & has some of the same ingredients as paint ..how can that be healthy ????

  6. I am furious after reading that letter from the heart foundation. It’s terrible that they are still claiming margarine is healthier than butter when there is so much research out there to suggest/prove otherwise.

  7. You ought to be congratulated, not meadow lea. Unfortunately the saturated fat myth is so engrained in society it is going to take a lot of work and money to change this… The heart foundation obviously have no clue which is really sad and seem survive on their licence fee……. Industrial seed oils are big business and a huge health issue. Keep spreading the word.

  8. Terri newton

    The big one that gets me is their comment on trans fat. Natural trans fat, including CLA is in no way the same thing as manufactured trans fat, and is known to have extremely protective effects. Now they’ll equate natural trans fats in all animal products as being the same as the processed stuff and use it to try to vilify saturated fats all over again.

  9. Sarah

    I recently watched a video on how canola oil is made and couldn’t believe how disgusting it is. I knew it was no good for anybody but when they mentioned solvents being used it sounded like outright poison! I can’t believe these oils are still being promoted as healthy, especially by the Heart Foundation. They have really lost credibility with a lot of people because of the foods they are giving the health tick to. That Milo cereal is a joke. Hopefully the petition will have some effect, we and our children are being lied to in the name of money.

  10. Hi Jessie – as a supporter of this I’m delighted to see you got so many fellow supporters.

    That reply from The Heart Foundation beggars belief. Are you able to go back to demand evidence for their outrageous claims? There is no evidence on the links that they provide. They need to provide evidence for every statement that they make. I’ve just got back from hols but, if you don’t mind, I’ll blog on their reply and set out the questions that they need to answer. If you are able to send them the questions that would be great! Organisations cannot continue to go around saying stupid things like “unhealthy saturated fat” “clogging arteries” “bad cholesterol” and other complete ignorance without being challenged.

    I tweeted recently that we should all boycott funding these heart foundations until they stop these lies and it was widely retweeted. Let’s hit them where it counts – in the pocket.

    Please tweet me if you’re on twitter and then I know who you are! I’m just zoeharcombe
    Well done again – it’s the Davids standing up to the Goliaths that can change the world
    Very best wishes – Zoe

    • Hi Zoe,

      Thanks so much for commenting :) I agree there response is absolutely ludicrous and they never back anything they say up with substantial scientific evidence. I wrote this blog when I first started the petition months ago and I knew hardly anything- I knew they were wrong but was not well researched. I am going to rewrite this blog in the next few days and tear them a new one haha.

      I will write to the woman who emailed me this and ask for more substantiated evidence (which they will not be able to provide as there is NONE)

      It would be fantastic if you could tweet and facebook the petition link and include it in your blog post as well. I have been messaging everyone under the sun in the last few days that I can think of try and drum up support as I believe EVERYONE needs to hear this information.

      People that follow it are getting sick and being led to an early grave. It is wrong!!!

      I just tweeted you, my name is Jessie Reimers. Thanks again for getting in touch. I LOVE YOUR BLOG! I learn so much from it!! Chat soon :) xx

  11. Hi Jessie

    I researched the Diet/Heart hypothesis fairly extensively a few years ago, when I started suggesting a lower carbohydrate approach to people with metabolic syndrome/ insulin resistance. My research took me back to the 1950s, when the hypothesis was taking shape.
    At the time it was clear that what was being suggested was an unproven theory and there was a lot of opposition to it. That seems to have been forgotten now and it is mistakenly accepted as fact and taught to dietitians, doctors and the general public. My rather long article about how it was formulated is on my website (under blog) and it highlights the many mistakes that were made. Great work starting this petition and increasing awareness about this important issue.

    Best regards, Jen
    http://www.babyboomersandbellies.com

    • THanks Jen, I was looking at your site the other day, looks fantastic :) some way you would like to get involved with the petition? Would be happy to share your stuff amongst my followers. Let me know if you have any ideas about how to get this out there more. Jessie.

    • Jen I can’t find a contact email or anything on your website. Can you please email me on jessrems@gmail.com? I have a Natural Parenting Magazine interested in running an article on the petition however they will only take an article written by a dietitian or a doctor. I thought you might be interested in writing it, good exposure for you and the petition! Jessie.

    • Thanks so much Zoe, I have already emailed them just now with all the questions, can’t wait to get a response (if I get one) oh the hilarity of it all, I’m sure it will be full of wonderful scientific based evidence (not). Thanks again this is awesome.

  12. Zara

    Hi Jesse. Just a thought, any chance you could change your comments (in bracket) to a different colour. I got confused a couple of times reading your comments, thinking it was theirs. Something like Zoe Harcombe’s – blue & red, as per the comment & link (above). Other than that, love your work, keep it up and thank you.

  13. Lisa

    Going to sign your petition today! Can you also start a petition for Diabetes Australia, who also instruct diabetics to eat lots of carbohydrates and industrial fats. You should see the crap they write in their publications. They are destroying diabetics bodies with their advice.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s