Butter or Margarine? Is There a Healthy Butter Substitute?
Margarine and Other Spreads
You’ll find all sorts of oil-based spreads falling into this category. “Margarine” is a product that has 80 percent fat, like butter. Many (but not all) other “soft spreads” or “tub” buttery products have less total fat as well as less saturated fat and/or calories. Often, these products tend to sport long lists of ingredients. Most of these ingredients (e.g., maltodextrin, mono or diglycerides) are harmless and help to keep the product stable. One thing you should scan for are the words "hydrogenated" or "partially hydrogenated." If the ingredient list includes one of these, then the product is not really trans-fat free (The FDA allows foods with less than 0.5 gram to be rounded down to 0.)