Butter has gotten a bad rap in recent years. I used to cringe when my toddler would want to eat butter all by itself. Recently, I caught myself happily handing it over to my littlest “butter-demander”. Why? I look at butter in a whole new light.
Butter can be good for you! It’s a source of fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E and K and it contains important trace minerals like magnesium, zinc, chromium, selenium and iodine.
What about the fat?
Fat, despite what we’ve been taught through the years, is actually very necessary for our bodies. Good fats are essential to developing a healthy brain. You want to eat the right kind of fat, of course, and if you choose butter wisely, it counts! Read more about Taking the Fear Out of Eating Fat from the Weston A Price foundation.
Margarine is actually full of unhealthy fats, and margarine-eaters have twice the rate of heart disease as butter-eaters! (Nutrition Week, March ’91)
Choosing a brand of butter at the store, as with most products these days, can be a challenging experience. We definitely aren’t lacking in choices, yet how does one even start in finding a healthy brand?
In my opinion, the easiest way to choose a healthy butter in the store is to choose one with the fewest ingredients. Some brands will have an ingredient list over 15 items long! Some have a refreshingly simple ingredient list: sweet cream, salt. Ahh.
You also want to choose butter that is hormone, steroid, and antibiotic free. The Organic Consumers Association has a list of the brands that are hormone-free, like Brown Cow.
Even better would be to choose organic butter from grass-fed cows. Better still would be fresh butter, made from fresh raw cream! If we have our own cow someday, I will definitely be whipping up my own butter!