THOUGHTFUL THURSDAY: …margarine kills turkeys… lactose intolerance… milk poisons

THINKING - light bulbThinking… navel gazing… reflecting… call it what you like.  I love it!

From the time I was “knee high to a grasshopper” I’ve always wondered WHY? … asked endless questions and no doubt driven those around me nearly crazy, which is probably why I’d sometimes get infuriating answers like:

* It’s  a wig- wam for a goose’s bridle.
* That’s for me to know and you wonder about.
* Just because…

As this blog is a legacy for my descendants, I’ve decided to start up “Thoughtful Thursday” posts to share some of the thoughts which have engaged me.  Maybe other readers will enjoy them too and may have had similar thoughts?


A post on Facebook this week immediately caught my eye… it is, as follows:


“Pass The Butter … Please.

This is interesting . .. .

Margarine was originally manufactured to fatten turkeys. When it killed the turkeys, the people who had put all the money into the research wanted a payback so they put their heads together to figure out what to do with this product to get their money back.

It was a white substance with no food appeal so they added the yellow colouring and sold it to people to use in place of butter. How do you like it? They have come out with some clever new flavourings….

DO YOU KNOW.. The difference between margarine and butter?

Read on to the end…gets very interesting!

Both have the same amount of calories.

Butter is slightly higher in saturated fats at 8 grams; compared to 5 grams for margarine.

Eating margarine can increase heart disease in women by 53% over eating the same amount of butter, according to a recent Harvard Medical Study.

Eating butter increases the absorption of many other nutrients in other foods.

Butter has many nutritional benefits where margarine has a few and only because they are added!

Butter tastes much better than margarine and it can enhance the flavours of other foods.

Butter has been around for centuries where margarine has been around for less than 100 years .

And now, for Margarine..

* Very High in Trans fatty acids.

* Triples risk of coronary heart disease …

* Increases total cholesterol and LDL (this is the bad cholesterol) and lowers HDL cholesterol, (the good cholesterol)

* Increases the risk of cancers up to five times..

* Lowers quality of breast milk

* Decreases immune response.

* Decreases insulin response.

And here’s the most disturbing fact… HERE IS THE PART THAT IS VERY INTERESTING!

Margarine is but ONE MOLECULE away from being PLASTIC… and shares 27 ingredients with PAINT.

These facts alone were enough to have me avoiding margarine for life and anything else that is hydrogenated (this means hydrogen is added, changing the molecular structure of the substance).

Open a tub of margarine and leave it open in your garage or shaded area. Within a couple of days you will notice a couple of things:

* no flies, not even those pesky fruit flies will go near it (that should tell you something)

* it does not rot or smell differently because it has no nutritional value ; nothing will grow on it.

Even those teeny weeny microorganisms will not a find a home to grow.

Why? Because it is nearly plastic . Would you melt your Tupperware and spread that on your toast?

Share This With Your Friends…..(If you want to butter them up’)!

Chinese Proverb:
When someone shares something of value with you and you benefit from it, you have a moral obligation to share it with others.




Well, in the blink of an eye three people clicked *like* in support of the leading comment… “No more marg in this house”… and the article itself.

 So me, being me…  did a little research and posted this article from the “Heart Foundation of NZ” dispelling what they claim to be a “Myth”. They write:

“Myth busting: butter versus margarine

Replacing saturated fat with unsaturated fats helps reduce your risk of heart attack and stroke. One of the main ways to do this is replacing butter with margarine and healthy oils. However, there are a lot of myths about margarine that we frequently get asked about.

The myth: margarine is one molecule away from plastic

This claim has been circulating on the internet since at least 2003. Plastic is a polymer, made up of a long chain of repeated smaller molecules. Plastics are usually made from crude oil and natural gas, but can be made from natural materials such as wood, corn, plants, and even sugars. In fact, one of the earliest plastics made in the 1800’s was from milk. So whilst both plastic and margarine can be made from vegetable oil, that is where any similarity ends. The claim is nonsensical – adding one molecule to margarine won’t turn it into plastic.

Even if it were true, it’s worth considering that one molecule can make a world of difference. Many natural substances are very similar in chemical composition but very different in appearance and effect. One molecule, and more importantly how the molecules are arranged, makes a huge difference to the end product. Take for example the difference between hydrogen peroxide (bleach) and water, which have only one atom difference.

The myth: margarine was originally made to fatten up turkeys but instead it killed them

Not true! Margarine was originally developed in 1869 in response to a request by Napoleon III for a viable, low-cost substitute for butter. It was developed for humans, and not for turkeys. The first margarine was made by combining salty water, milk, and margaric acid to softened beef fat. Beef fat was subsequently replaced with vegetable oils.

The myth: margarine increases risk of heart disease by 53% according to a recent Harvard Medical School study

This claim relates to a study conducted in the United States in the 1980s. At that time, margarines in the US contained up to 29% trans fat. We now know that trans fat has an adverse effect on cholesterol levels, even more so than saturated fat. So what this study was really observing was the effect of trans fat on heart health, rather than the effect of margarine itself.

Levels of trans fat in margarines in New Zealand have always been far lower than those in the United States, and changes in production methods mean most are under 2% trans fat. Margarine spreads carrying the Tick have been independently tested and contain less than 1% trans fat.

It is recommended that we get less than 1% of our energy from trans fats. The good news is that more than 85% of New Zealanders consume less than this amount. Trans fats are also found in processed, bakery, and fried foods, for example biscuits and cakes.”  

I was a bit disappointed when posting this “Myth Busting” message from the “NZ HEART FOUNDATION”  because it seemed to stop further comment and closed down the possibility of any discussion and I was rather keen to post the following two vids and chat on about probs with Milk products:

Lactose Intolerance

Milk the Deadly Poison

After all that “heavy stuff”, I finished off with a bit of fun with the English National Ballet.  Just click on the link below.

Ballet Shake

Hoping your week was wonderful… Cheers, Catherine.


Copyright © 2013. Catherine Ann Crout-Habel

24 thoughts on “THOUGHTFUL THURSDAY: …margarine kills turkeys… lactose intolerance… milk poisons

  1. A very interesting post Catherine. I shall never look at low fat margarine in the same light as those details are quite frightening. My cousin shared some facts with me about Corrola – I’ve been checking margarine and butter ever since!

    A great first Thoughful Thursday – will see what I can russle up for tomorrow!

    • Oh, dearie me Julie and Deborah… I constructed this post very badly and misled you both terribly but have now corrected this by giving the NZ Heart Foundation’s Myth Busting article equal prominence on my post rather than just a “link” … very s–o-r-r-y 😦
      So, what the “Heart Foundation” is saying is that all this hype, about the dangers of margarine, is a whole heap of nonsense. The vids I put re: the dangers/ problems with milk & milk products is a pain, for me, because I LOVE a very cold and BIG glass of milk with a meal. That’s the child in me.
      Looking forward to reading a “Thoughtful Thursday” post from you tomorrow Julie 🙂

      • Of course there is no problem, afterall, being around 12 hours ahead of me you have already done a day’s work! – being in the UK we don’t have a problem with butter being left out melting – unless the heating is on full blast 24/7 – like recently with the latest cold & snow spell!

        Personally I can think of nothing worse than a glass of milk, large or otherwise. Memories of warm milk at junior school, in the days that kids got milk. Being forced to drink it warm or not without a doubt put me off milk. I will make a concession to a MacDonalds thick shake – chocolate or banana!

        Thankfully I do not have any serious intolerances – gluten or soya so am very lucky, but there are some foods that I avoid…..

        The pressure for tomorrow…….thinking cap on – ironically I have written a rather thoughtful post for Sunday Salon, so will see if the grey cells can provide another.

      • OH… no pressure Julie!…I can wait till next Thursday 🙂 Seriously though, only if the mood strikes you and you’re feeling like a bit of fun and off-loading. I actually have done a couple of other TT posts which you can find in the catalogue.
        I agree YUK!!! to the warm/ sickly school milk 😦 … Mum ordered the school to stop forcing me to drink it cos I drank enough at home and that YUK was turning me off. Love ma mum xxx Mc Donald’s thickshakes … ha ha ha
        Oily melted butter reminds me of a story I should write, for my kids/grand kids, re: a caravan holiday, melted oily butter on table, budgie having his “daily stretch of the wings” and landing… you know where. Cracks me up to think about it but must turn my mind to matters of desecrated graves, harassing officials etc

      • No pressure at all. Something will occur to me, I have a few ideas.

        Your comment about the budgie reminded me of a story I read yesterday of a parrot who pulled his feathers out; his owner knitted him a sleeveless pullover. There was a picture and I wish I had shared it. Sad, but it did make me laugh and brightened my morning!

    • G’day Deborah… hopefully you’ve read my comments above to Julie. So sorry for all the confusion. Have been having some “techno probs” so focussing on that rather than the content… but no excuse. So pleased Julie showed me, by her response, that I’d misled readers… but not prob and no harm done, eh?
      Nothing beats the taste of butter but can be a prob with spreading when you have to keep it in the fridge, most of the time, cos it melts all over the place otherwise. ha ha ha…. Cheerio for now.

      • Nothing beats warm “damper” or “scones” slathered with butter which melts and runs down your arm Deborah. yum yum yum… although I am rather partial to well flavoured “dripping” spread on hot toast and smothered with loads of salt & pepper. Can hear my arteries cracking just with the thought of it… but who cares 😀 …

  2. And I know you aren’t in America, but I wouldn’t trust anything that FOX news says. LOL. Most of the milk we have available is California is from cows not treated with the evil rBST hormones. I think it is important to try and eat food closer to its source so for me butter is better than margarine. 🙂

    • Laughed about your comment re: FOX news Deborah cos I choose not to purchase “cable”, so never watch it and had to go back to see which of the Vids was FOX. Wasn’t surprised it was that fool who was blabbing on about the poisons in milk… seems that his report is equal in hysteria and probably heaps of mis-information as that ridiculous margarine criticism.

      I’m thinking that “dripping” is closer to the source too, than margarine, and so will happily go on spreading it on my toast… whenever I can get enough to devour in this way, despite health warnings. As a young mum, roasting at least 2 legs of lamb a week, I had heaps of tasty flavoured dripping… some of which I’d pass onto mum to enjoy. Now I’m in the same boat as her … but no tasty dripping is coming my way. Maybe I’ll request it, from my children, for Christmas this year. ha ha ha 😀

  3. Margarine v Butter! This was a HOT debate in Ireland in the 1960s. In Ireland a pound block of butter was 4 shillings and 11 pence a pound. This was extraordinarily expensive and so my mother switched to Moy margarine which was much cheaper (About 2 shillings if I remember correctly) in order to meet the food bill for a household of 8 people. Margarine could also be used in baking and in those days there was a lot of baking in every house – bread, scones, cakes, tarts, pastry and of course for frying where lard was not suitable.The slightly different taste was camouflaged with heaps of jam or sugar or honey 🙂 . Sometimes a local lady would bring a slab of home made butter – freshly churned from summer milk – it was vile – deep yellow and so very strong, we kids hated it ! Health benefits/ hazards were unheard of then – so margarine it was 🙂

    • Love your post Angela. Yep, there’s always ongoing debate about the health benefits of this, or that… Sometimes seems like the opinions/ views/ warnings change more often than I change my underpants… only “joshing” of course 😀

      Guess what drew my attention to this Facebook post was that “as quick as Jack Flash” so many young, and very highly educated women, immediately accepted it as “the gospel”… no critical thinking and no putting their brains into action before making a decision. Come to think of it they’re not that young at all and reckon that by the age of 40 I was questioning these types of alarmist reports… mmmhhh

      I can almost smell all that delish baking going on in your childhood home Angela. Our mums were wonderful with what they were able to create on a very type budget, eh? Your mention of Lard reminded me that the ONLY way to properly “crackle” pork is to vigoursly rub LARD and heaps of salt into the skin, not oil!… Your talk of the taste of that home made butter reminded me that when we were children, and on holidays in the Adelaide Hills, dad purchased some milk from the local dairy fresh out of the cow and we all did a huge “chuck & chunder”.

      Lovely memories… thanks for sharing.

  4. I’ve seen that article about how ‘terrible’ margarine is and thought it might be a hoax but hadn’t checked so now I can confidently say it is a hoax!! I like the idea of the Thoughtful Thursday posts I just never remember to do them, I’m like that with Trove Tuesday, it’s only when I’m reading everyone else’s that I realise I forgot again 🙂

    • Happy to have done the research for you on that silly critique on Margarine Kylie 🙂 … no point in both of us wasting time on such nonsense, eh? … but, as I said, it’s impossible for me to let something like this go when other are accepting it and it sounds so “far out” to me. Not that there mightn’t be some truth in it but, really?

      Oh, the “Thoughtful Thursday” posts are a great outlet for me because I’m constantly reading articles, reflecting on them and saving the “link”. Have been thinking of a separate blog to post this stuff for me to reflect on but also for my grandchildren, when I’m dead and gone, to be able to see what topics grabbed my attention. So, it’s actually not a chore for me but more of a relief 🙂

      You lead such an interesting life, with your volunteer work, beautiful craftwork etc., that I’d love to read some “Thoughtful Thursday” posts with you talking about some of those things and even if just quite briefly e.g. reflections on a new yarn, experience at your market stall or whatever. Anyway the important thing I reckon is that activities like this be absolute fun and never a chore.

      Toodle ooo for now and BTW I haven’t forgotten about the work we’re doing re: the Payneham Cemetery… just waiting for something to report back on 😦

  5. Butter vs Marg… No contest! Butter is so yummy that it could be made of mashed puppies and I would still probably eat it (as long as they didn’t have sad puppies on the label of course).
    We try to be healthy and eat marg most of the time (despite the taste) but keep real butter in the fridge for emergencies like hot cross buns or mashed potato. 😉
    If only marg WAS one molecule away from plastic I could avoid it forever! Why, oh why, did you have to include the facts 😉

    • ha ha ha… Metan. What a spoilsport I am, eh?… oooooohhh… those poor little puppies 😉
      Damper and scones are also “better with butter”… Such a shame that some of my fam are “lactose intolerant” and miss the joy of licking melted button off their elbow.

  6. Does anyone in Aussie remember the Peter Russell-Clark ads for the Dairy Board, late 1980’s/early 1990’s maybe? The punch line was “Butter is better, margarine gives you boils” which, delivered by Peter, sounded more like “budda is bedda, maaaaaargarine gives you boils”. Hilarious.

    • Peter Russell-Clarke’s other punchline “Where’s the cheese?!” still gets a look in at our house! 🙂
      (Probably more accurate if I out “Whe-e-e-ere’s the cheese?!” though. It is hard to write words with a laugh in the middle!)

  7. Pingback: THOUGHTFUL THURSDAY: Is microwaving our food damaging our health?… | Seeking Susan ~ Meeting Marie ~ Finding Family

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