One for the fat people: the surprising conclusion to the fat science debate

Just spent the evening looking over Tena with Fidel Andi after having talked organisation, politics and healing practices. We sat in silence for a while. “The town has grown“, I said. “Phuusf“, he answered, “and it’s still only long city…“, showing me a sausage-like shape with his hands, “…it will grow in other directions in the future“, then pointing across the town below us – with all its lights – towards the Llanganates in the close up horizon.

We were talking again. “So, fat from a pig is no good in the diet after healing work?“, I had wanted to revisit that thing about fat for a while, “…but neither is the fat of the guanta (Cuniculus paca)?” I mentioned about the otherwise desirable bush meat in the Kichwa diet. “No, the fat of the guanta is not good“.

“What is the problem with fat?”

  • “It is toxic, it causes inflammation”.

“Does all fat cause inflammation, is all fat toxic?”, thinking about omega science.

  • “No, there is good fat and there is bad fat”.

“So some fat is good fat?

  • “Yes, the fat of the crocodile is a fine medicine!”.

“Do the animals that have good fat tend to be slimmer beasts?”

  • “Yes, maybe. The problem with fat is contamination, in food and in the environment. Some animals don’t eat well and it goes in their fat and end up in your fat. It can be difficult to digest”.

“Yes, good fat is good”, I cleverly added.

  • “Yes, it helps you when you fast, it gives you energy, sustains you”.

Then we talked about how the chemical industry uses the “third world” to dump an infinite stream of toxic chemicals that unwitting people buy and use every day, because there are are no other options for sale. Salt, refined sugar from poor sources, low quality vegetable oils, cleaning agents, cosmetics, insect repellents and god knows what. So much work to be done for public health, but at least we solved the big question, the hot topic at debate, coming to the shocking conclusion that fat is an ambiguous bunch of triglycerides: There is good fat and there is bad fat. All things have two handles, beware of the wrong one.