A London heart surgeon has said that banning butter could save thousands of lives every year after he reported seeing patients as young as 33 in need of heart bypass operations caused by poor diet.
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Shyam Kolvekar blamed high levels of saturated fat - found in foods such as butter, red meat and high-fat cheeses - for the high number of people in need of treatment for heart and cardiovascular disease. He added that a simple switch to low-fat, healthy butter spreads or a banning of butter altogether could save thousands of lives every year.
According to the Food Standards Agency (FSA), approximately 90% of children, 88% of men and 83% of women in the UK eat too much saturated fat, consuming on average 20% too much per day, with the Guideline Daily Amount (GDA) for women standing at 20g and 30g for men.
Mr Kolvekar, who works at the Heart Hospital in central London, said: “In reality people don’t stick to complicated diets. By banning butter and replacing it with a healthy spread the average daily saturated fat intake would be reduced by 8g - that’s 40% of a woman’s GDA.
“This would save thousands of lives each year and help to protect them from cardiovascular disease - the UK’s biggest killer.”