While butter is what makes most meals taste so decadently delicious, it consists of mostly saturated fat, which clogs pores and raises cholesterol, a huge factor in heart disease.
Even in moderation, butter can be risky for those with past health issues. According to Everyday Health, if you want to lower your cholesterol, The American Heart Association recommends reducing saturated fat intake to 11 to 13 grams, which means that only two tablespoons of butter already puts you over your daily limit.
Here are four healthy alternatives that serve the same purpose:
Ratio for baking: 1 cup pureed avocado to 1 cup butter
Though also high in fat, avocados are high in monounsaturated fats, which help lower cholesterol, as well as risk for heart disease and stroke. Essentially, avocados have the opposite effect of butter.
They are are also jam-packed with nutrients. In a single 3.5 oz serving, avocados will have you exceed the daily recommended value of folate, potassium, vitamin K, C, B5, B6, and E.
Ratio for baking: 3/4 cup of olive oil to every cup of butter
Olive oil is an especially good substitute when making mashed potatoes, or in pasta sauces. Like avocados, olive oil is high in good fats.
One study also found that LDL-cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) was lowered in 28 outpatients who were given olive oil supplements once a day for six weeks.
Ratio for baking: 1 cup applesauce to 1 cup butter
Great for baking, applesauce’s moisture and consistency makes any baked good even richer. It’s also naturally rich in fibre, which is essential to your digestive health.
Ratio for baking: 3/4 cup pumpkin puree to 1 cup butter
Muffins, cakes, and breads are the perfect opportunity to make the swap to pumpkin puree. Pumpkin is extremely rich in vitamin A, which serves as a natural antioxidant to your body. It’s also packed with minerals like copper, calcium, potassium and phosphorus.
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