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Ghee or Butter: Pick Your Scoop After Decoding the Fat Debate

It is a timeless debate over whether desi ghee or butter is better. The answer to this debate lies in which you decide over the other keeping their health benefits and nutritional values in mind. Both have their risks as well. However, the ultimate choice lies in which appeals to your taste buds. So, make an informed choice before zeroing on either one.

Edited By : Lifestyle Desk | Updated: May 24, 2024 15:05 IST
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Ghee or Butter

The debate between ghee or butter has been a subject of heated debate over the years. Some side with butter while some are loyal supporters of the desi ghee. Either way, both will fight and debate against each over the other. But what actually are the reasons for this debate, let us now walk through this.

What is Butter?

The first evidence of butter can be traced back to 4500 years back. It is simply made by churning milk to separate the milk solids (butterfat) from the liquid (buttermilk). It surely contains quite a high amount of fat which is what gives it the rich and creamy texture. Due to its unique taste and pleasant flavour, it is used for a variety of cooking in many countries all over the globe. However, in spite of its many benefits it still has been at the centre of a stage of controversies over decades.

What is Ghee?

You will be surprised to know that the desi ghee is simply clarified butter. On heating butter, the milk content in it breaks down to separate from the fat. The milk content then caramelises and the oil left behind is called desi ghee or clarified butter. This, over the years, has become a staple of the subcontinent. Even the desi ghee has received its fair share of backlashes from health-conscious people everywhere.

Nutritional Value of Ghee and Butter

Here is a chart of the nutritional values of both ghee and butter:

Nutrients                                                Ghee                                                                    Butter
Carbs                                                 trace amounts                                   trace amounts              
Vitamin A                                                    13% of DV                                11% of DV
Vitamin E                                                     3% of DV                                               2% of DV
Vitamin K                                                     1% of DV                                          1% of DV
Calories                                                             123                                                         100
Fat                                                                      14 g                                                        11 g
Saturated Fat                                                    9 g                                                          7 g
Polyunsaturated Fat                                        0.5 g                                          0.5 g
Monounsaturated Fat                                      4 g                                                         3 g
Protein                                                       trace amounts                                      trace amounts

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Impact on immunity

Butter has components that protect the body from free radicals, it helps improve eyesight and even helps to prevent breast and stomach cancer. Likewise, ghee has cancer-fighting conjugated linoleic acid that can tackle cardiovascular diseases and cancer cells. Immunity-wise both have similar qualities which makes choosing one over the other quite difficult.

Benefits of Butter

Here are some of the major benefits of butter, which according to controversy is quite beneficial for heart health:

  •       Has cancer-reducing agents
  •       Minimises the rate of loss of vision or age-related macular degeneration
  •       Strengthens bones
  •       Gives healthier skin

Benefits of Ghee

Now for a look at the health benefits of the desi ghee:

  •       Soothes gastric ulcer
  •       Helps to fight obesity by inducing satiety
  •       Boosts heart health and reduce unhealthy cholesterol levels when taken in moderation
  •       Good for lactose-intolerant people
  •       Steps up digestion
  •       Used as an ingredient in ayurvedic medicines
  •       Used as an emollient

Risk factors Connected with Ghee and Butter

After hearing of all the health benefits and goodness, it is now time to talk about its risk factors which are just a few. Both are extremely beneficial for health provided they are consumed in moderate amounts, but the moment their consumption is stepped up unnecessarily then comes the risk factors.  Obesity is one cause of concern when excess of any are taken. So long as you consume them in moderate amounts you are covered with their immense health benefits.

After reading through their benefits and risks and their nutritional benefits, it is totally up to you the consumer to decide which is better for you in every aspect. Or better still you will do a lot of good if you can consult an expert over such matters if you are confused.

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First published on: May 24, 2024 03:05 PM IST

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