Does tallow harden in your intestines?

(M) #1

strange question but can tallow stay thick and hard like in your intestines and maybe not absorb properly? it hardens up quickly after melting. some sites say melting point is 104 degrees and I don’t think the human body is that hot.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #2

Given that the race has been eating beef and lamb for two million years, I think we’d have noticed this at some point.

A simple experiment: (1) eat some tallow; (2) see what comes out the other end.

Hint: I think you are leaving the whole digestive process out of the picture.

(Allie) #3

Why would it? Is the inside of your body that cold? Does your digestive system not work?

Major thought flaw with oils that can solidify at room temperature, internally our bodies are much warmer.


That was my thought too. It’s food, it apparently works well as so many people ate it during history without noticeable problems so why to worry about it? :smiley:

(M) #5

I’d been reading that it’s harder to break and digest the bonds of saturated fats and I wondered if it had anything to do with it. cheese is also very hard but I figure the theory of cheese possibly causing constipation in some people is the calcium content.


Short answer, No. It would depend on your gut biome as to how quickly it gets digested. As with everything there is a duality. Too much may cause problems, but you should be ok in smaller amounts.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #7

Saturated fat is what increases your HDL.

Butter is 54% saturated fat, and it doesn’t come out of the body in a solid state. Coconut oil is 77% saturated fat, palm oil is 51%, and neither of them leaves the body as a solid, either. Beef fat, tallow, is 51% saturated fat, like palm oil. Lard, by the way is 41%.

So it’s pretty clear that this is an unnecessary worry. The body has enzymes that break fatty acids into their pieces and turns them into ATP during the Krebs cycle. As I understand it, the body has no difficulty breaking down fatty acids into ATP, carbon dioxide, and water, any more than it has trouble doing the same with glucose. The only difference is that fatty acid metabolism takes place only in the mitochondria, whereas glucose metabolism, which is more evolutionarily ancient, can occur anywhere in the cell.

P.S.–Ketones are what you get when you stop the process of fatty-acid metabolism in the middle.


Not once it’s stuck in a vat of hydrochloric acid it’s not! We’re literally built for that. Now if you have low stomach acid and your gallbladder doesn’t work right, maybe it’ll take a while, but absent of that, there’s zero issues.

(KM) #9

You can also extrapolate this about anything else you put in your mouth. The ‘melting point’ of steak is probably 1000 degrees (100,000 degrees?), it’s completely irrelevant.

(Jack Bennett) #10

It couldn’t enter your intestines as a solid mass of tallow, unless you’re swallowing it whole. Which is a bad idea. Even then, passage through the digestive tract would break down and emulsify the tallow.

Eating it as part of a normal meal, the long chain saturated fats will be mixed with water, protein, fiber, carbohydrate, and micronutrients. And the “hard” saturated fats will be exposed to digestive juices like everything else entering the digestive tract.

(Alec) #11


(Allie) #12

You seem to have a habit of stressing yourself out and tying yourself in emotional knots with unnecessary research. Maybe best to take a step back from the texts and pay attention to your actual body and how it responds to different things, as the individual being you are. Your body will guide you better than anyone else’s research or experience if you will only relax a bit and allow it to.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #13

This is good advice. I’ve certainly found it helpful. One of the bad points of Western medicine is that it considers our body as an adversary to be overcome and controlled, rather than as an a ally that knows what it’s doing.

I finally came to the realisation that it’s very difficult to out-think two million years of evolution.


Solid advice. @KetoPescatarian tend to worry about things most of us never would and it is not healthy :cry:
But listening to our body (especially if it gives us very good feedback) is important anyway.

(MC) #15

I’m still trying to get my head around glycolysis.

Mercola, going on Ray Peat’s theories, now believes that directly burning glucose in the mitochondria produces more ATP and produces more carbon dioxide/water product, less ROS. If you eat fat, the Randle cycle puts the body on the path of fat burning rather than burn glucose in the mitochondria, and this produces only 2ATP. He says that eating fruit and honey and keeping fat low will burn glucose in the mitochondria.

And yet I thought all pathways lead to pyruvate and anything burned outside the mitochondria lead to glycolysis, lactic acid and less ATP. I’m not convinced by his argument, since evolution suggests we wouldn’t have access to that much fructose.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #16

Then Mercola is wrong. It is trying to handle an excessive amount of glucose that damages the mitochondria. Glycation and oxidation go hand in hand.

Only the mitochondria can handle fat, whereas glucose can be glycolysed anywhere in a cell. A gram of fat and a gram of glucose produce nearly identical yields of ATP. It’s statements like these that caused me to give up on Mercola half a decade ago.

If I weren’t sober and an asthmatic, I’d love to try whatever the good doctor has been smoking, lol! :grin:

As Wofgang Pauli remarked about a student’s thesis that someone showed him, “It’s not even wrong” IDas is nicht einmal falsch).

(Alec) #17

I gave up on Mercola being right about much a long time ago…