Henry Ford Health System
Published 8:45 p.m. UTC Jul 2, 2018
A few years ago, a well-respected medical journal published a study questioning the link between saturated fat and heart disease. As a result, some people grew skeptical of the long-standing recommendation to limit saturated fat in an effort to reduce the risk of heart disease. Foods rich in saturated fat include well-marbled meat, bacon, cheese, cream, whole and 2% milk, poultry skin, palm, palm kernel and coconut oils and, of course, butter.
More: 5 recipes to cool things down on hot days
More: Healthy Table: Daily cup or two of coffee may have health benefits
More: Mango gazpacho is a sweet spin on a classic summer soup
Nutrition researchers at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that people who replaced saturated fat with refined carbohydrates (think sugar, white bread and pop) did not lower their risk of heart disease. But for those who replaced saturated fat with unsaturated fat (think vegetable oils and nuts) and whole grains, the risk went down.
One tablespoon of butter contains about one-third of the daily intake for saturated fat, making it an ingredient that doesn't fit well into heart-healthy recipes. A butter replacement we like to use in cookie recipes is a mix of tub margarine and reduced-fat cream cheese.
When selecting a margarine or spread, make sure your choice has no more than 2 grams of saturated fat and no trans fat per tablespoon. For butter lovers, you might like Land O Lakes Light Butter with Canola Oil. It's a blend of water, canola oil and butter, and it meets our selection guideline.
Today's Red White and Blue Cookies are a patriotic treat for the holiday. We took steps to reduce the amount of refined carbohydrates in the recipe by using less sugar, replacing some of the white flour with whole-wheat flour and using fewer white chocolate chips. Still, it's a cookie that should be enjoyed in moderation.
Darlene Zimmerman is a registered dietitian in Henry Ford Hospital's Heart & Vascular
Institute. For questions about today's recipe, call 313-972-1920.
Red, White and Blue Cookies
Makes: 24 cookies / Prep time: 20 minutes / Total time: 45 minutes
Parchment paper or vegetable oil cooking spray
¼ cup tub margarine
¼ cup (2 ounces) reduced-fat cream cheese
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
¾ cup white whole-wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
⅛ teaspoon salt
½ cup white chocolate chips
⅔ cup dried blueberries
⅔ cup dried cherries, roughly chopped
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or coat with cooking spray; set aside. In a medium bowl, beat together margarine, cream cheese, granulated sugar, and brown sugar. Add egg and vanilla, and beat until combined. In a separate bowl, combine all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir flour mixture into sugar mixture until combined. Stir in white chocolate chips, dried blueberries and dried cherries. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto prepared baking sheet. Bake 10 to 12 minutes, or until edges begin to brown. Cool on wire rack.
Created and tested by Darlene Zimmerman, MS, RD for Heart Smart.
135 calories (20% from fat), 3 grams fat (2 grams sat. fat, 0 grams trans fat), 24 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams protein, 104 mg sodium, 11 mg cholesterol, 23 mg calcium, 1 gram fiber. Food exchanges: 1 ½ starch, ½ fat.