Fat has gotten a seriously bad rep over the years. It’s thanks to clever and convincing marketing tactics that we are lead to believe that “low fat” and “fat free” foods are the way to a smaller waistline and optimal health. Well, I’m about to bust that myth up. Because in order for these fat-free products to be edible, the fat is replaced with a whole lot of sugar, carbohydrates AND funky chemicals and additives. Cue skyrocketing obesity and diabetes rates, and an increase in both chronic and degenerative disease. Tsk Tsk sugar – you’ve been letting fat take the blame all these years and it’s been you all along!
o Every single membrane of every cell and every organelle inside of cells are made up of fat.
o Fats provide energy and are the building blocks for hormones.
o Carrier for fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K.
The top 3 reasons why your body needs fat
1) To lose weight
I know, this goes against many people’s beliefs, but hear me out. Put simply – fat is satisfying. It helps you to feel fuller, for longer – resulting in eating less overall. Bottom line – if you’re craving a fat filled food, such as dairy, reach for the full fat version and just have less of it. You will be left feeling much more satisfied.
2) To feel happier
Hormones are made up of protein and fat. Therefore, if you are not consuming adequate amounts of good quality fats, your body won’t be able to make hormones and the mood boosting messages won’t be delivered. Omega 3 fatty acids in particular, play a key role in improved mood as they are one of the basic building blocks of the brain. These essential fats must be consumed through the diet and can be found in seafood, walnuts and leafy greens.
3) To be smarter
Healthy fats are linked to clear thinking, good memory & balanced mood. The monounsaturated fat found in avocados, for example, helps blood circulate better, resulting in optimal brain function. Oh yeah, and you’re brain is made of fat. “If you squeezed out all of the water from your brain, a whopping 60% of the dry weight would be made up of fat.”
Not all fat, however, is created equal. In order to reap the benefits of this mighty macronutrient, it’s important to stay far, far away from trans fats – found in processed and fried foods. Instead, focus on consuming approximately 30% of your daily calories from naturally occurring unsaturated fats sources and saturated in moderation.
My Top 3 Fabulously Fatty Foods
1) Fish – such as wild salmon.
For a 4 ingredient salmon recipe, click here.
Spread it like butter, add it to a salad, or eat it for dessert!
3) Coconut Oil
Coconut oil can be found in most grocery stores. Look for raw, organic and virgin.
Claire LeGresley, RHN
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Posts inspired by the team at Platinum Health & Wellness.