What do you guys think about this study? http://www.ajcn.org/content/92/6/1452.abstract?sid=892851ef-2e45-4984-9587-d0e121fd3185
Here's an excerpt from the abstract: Conclusions: These results suggest that saturated FA intake may significantly increase hip fracture risk, whereas monounsaturated and polyunsaturated FA intakes may decrease total fracture risk. In postmenopausal women with a low intake of marine n−3 FAs, a higher intake of n−6 FAs may modestly decrease total fracture risk.
1) Correlation is not causation. The conclusions are way over-stated.
2) The design rests on retrospective questionaires. The data are thus suspect, and recall bias is highly likely.
3) Since this is just an abstract, we don't know if/how they controlled for co-variables, such as weight, % bodyfat, exercise, vitamin D, vitamin K, other dietary factors, etc.
This may be a starting point for further study, but I wouldn't trade in your rib eyes for tofu just yet.
Let me tell you how my journey to paleo began. As an obese former soccer player I got invited to play a friendly game after work. Hadn't played in years. Tripped, fell, and broke my collar bone. In six places. Had to have a titanium rod put in the shoulder to hold it together. $20,000 surgery. And I didn't fall hard, mind you. Found out I had osteporosis as a 36-year-old. As bad as any little old SAD grandmother.
Wondered how this could happen eating all those healthy oils like safflower, walnut, and grapeseed oil and eating healthy meats like chicken (and minimal bad red meats like beef) wrapped in healthy corn and flour tortillas. Ultimately, my experiments led to greatly higher animal fats, coconut milk, and the like. I lost weight and became strong and felt great.
Now that I eat beef and fry my salmon in bacon fat with butter on top I play soccer four nights a week, goalie, where I throw myself around in ridiculous ways. And I'm not even sore the next day (unless I get asked to sub and play three games in a row like last Friday night).
In short, I'm not buying it. PUFAs and MUFAs and/or grains gave me osteoporosis. There are other possible variables, too. But it wasn't saturated fats that did it because I wasn't eating them.
This is an epidemiological study that just mines old data for correlations and then guesses as to causation. On average, SAD eaters who eat more saturated fat may also eat more processed food and be less careful about their food intake. They might also be more overweight and exercise less. The trouble is that even if you try to control for confounders, you can never figure out them all. We don't even know the sources of the saturated fat that were consumed. That is why epidimiological studies are notoriously flimsy sources of evidence and should not be used to draw conclusions, especially over other more controlled studies that show improved bone density when eating saturated fat.