Which is Worse, Fat or Sugar?

Confused? Have you ever wondered which is worse: fat or sugar?

Fat Versus Sugar

You have probably heard that carbohydrates can lead to weight gain (and this might lead you to think that sugar is worse) but you may have also heard that fat can lead to weight gain (and this may lead you thinking fat is worse). With these two thoughts in your head you can find yourself bouncing from a low-fat diet to a low-carb diet and then back to a low-fat diet.

If you are feeling confused about which is worse (fat or sugar) you are not alone.

This debate has been going on for a long time and has created a truckload of books (none of which address the real issue). Here is the truth: while there is really no good sugar that you can eat, fat can be good or bad for you (depending of what kind you choose).

Sugar Equals Fat

I’ve said this enough throughout this blog, but it bares saying again.

Sugar is turned into fat in your body because your body doesn’t like to waste energy. When you drink a soda, or eat something sugary, your body cannot possibly use all that sugar energy. Your body’s solution to extra sugar energy running around the body is to store it. This is why low-carb diets work, if you keep your blood sugar low then you also keep your body from converting blood sugar into body fat.

Remember that sugar itself is easy to turn into fat, but there are also foods that act like sugar that will just as easily be turned into fat.

Fat Depends

There are bad fats and good fats (and this will be the opposite of what you have probably heard).

Next to sugar, there is not a worse food to put in your mouth than vegetable oils. They look suspiciously similar to sugar because these oils are highly processed and highly refined. They are very unstable (think: create free-radicals), they turn into trans-fats, and when you consume these oils, they increase inflammation in your body.

Eating saturated fats, such those found in meats and butter, coconut/palm oil along with seed oils such as olive and avocado are okay.

Which is Worse, Fat or Sugar?

The question about which is worse (fat or sugar) is that they both cause us problems and especially when bad fats and sugar are combined in a meal. The low-carb people got it half right and the low-fat people got it half right. If you want to lose weight, you need to find a diet plan that avoids sugars and uses only healthy fats.


  1. Is a Vietnamese simple syrup based dressing (oil free) worse for you than an olive oil based dressing?

    1. Hi Sarah,

      I’m sorry, I’m not familiar with that kind of dressing, would you mind letting me know the ingredients. In general, the no-sugar oil based dressings are the best.

      Dr. Scott

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: