FatPublic Health

The impact of a 10% limit on saturated fat

Executive summary

This is a short note with a big finding.


I know someone who was diagnosed with pre-diabetes and he avoided becoming a type 2 diabetic by adopting a very low carbohydrate diet. He committed to consuming less than 10% of his diet in the form of carbohydrate. To achieve this, he decided that he would avoid all foods containing more than 10% carbohydrate and then he would never exceed the 10% limit in his overall diet. I thought that was a clever way of executing his plan.

It made me think of the saturated fat guideline that has been in place since 1977 in the US (and adopted in other countries since): “Thou shall have no more than 10% of one’s calories in the form of saturated fat.” Notwithstanding that this guideline has no evidence base, if one followed the above principle of achieving this restriction by not eating any single food with more than 10% saturated fat, what would one be able to eat?

The facts about fat

Please login below or sign up to access the rest of this article.