Why You Should Add Fat to Your Diet - Part 2
I've blogged about this before, but it's still something people have a hard time believing so I'm offering more proof that eating fat doesn't make you fat! This Crazy Blonde believes that eating good fats is beneficial to your health! This is a long post, but so interesting! I hope you'll read! I've included great recipes for cooking with healthy oils! Also, join me for a cooking class where you'll learn more about health and nutrition and you'll leave with great recipes like the ones below!
I've summarized an article by Dr. Mark Hyman, author of Eat Fat, Get Thin. Dr. Hyman states that fat is one of the body's most basic building blocks.
"The average person is made up of between 15 and 30 percent fat but we've unfairly demonized dietary fat and followed low fat diets that almost always equate into high sugar and high refined carb diets that contribute to obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and numerous other problems. Fat is an important part of our diet! Below, I'm listing 30 facts that debunk the belief that our diets should be low fat!"
Sugar makes us fat, fat does not make us fat. "The average American eats 152 pounds of sugar and 146 pounds of flour that convert into sugar every year." More sugar means your cells don't respond to insulin. Your body pumps out more and more insulin to get your blood sugar levels back down. You can't burn all the sugar you eat, so your body stores it as fat and that creates insulin resistance.
Dietary fat is more complex than sugar. There are over 257 names for sugar, but they all create the same damage. Sugar is sugar. It is all bad for you. Fat is more complex. We have saturated, monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, and even trans fats. Some fats are good, others neutral, and a few are bad (the trans fats).
Low fat diets tend to be more heart unhealthy. When people eat less fat, they tend to eat more starch or sugar instead, and this increases their levels of the small, dense cholesterol that causes heart attacks. Studies show that 75 percent of people who end up in the emergency room with a heart attack have normal cholesterol levels. "What they do have is pre diabetes or type 2 diabetes."
"Saturated fat is not your enemy! A review of all the research on saturated fat published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found no correlation between saturated fat and heart disease. As with all fats, quality becomes key here. The fats in a fast food bacon feedlot cheeseburger will have an entirely different effect than saturated fat in coconut oil." It is worth pointing out that if you're eating animal fat, it is very important that that the animal ate a good diet, meaning no grain, hormones or antibiotics and was pasture raised.
Some fats are unhealthy. They include trans fat and vegetable oils. These fats make us fatter and contribute to inflammation which plays a role in almost every chronic disease.
We all benefit from more omega 3s. Most Americans are deficient in omega 3s. Ideal ways to get them include eating wild or sustainably raised cold water fish, buying omega 3 rich eggs, and taking an omega 3 supplement twice a day with breakfast and dinner. I have recently started taking cod liver oil.
Eating fat can make you lean. "Healthy cell walls made from high quality fats are better able to metabolize insulin, which keeps blood sugar better regulated." Without proper blood sugar control, the body stores fat. The right fats also increase fat burning, cut your hunger, and reduce fat storage. Eating the right fats makes you lose weight, while eating too much sugar and the wrong kinds of fat make you fat.
"Good fats can heal."
"Your brain is 60 percent fat. The biggest portion comes from the omega 3 fat called docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Your brain needs DHA to spark communication between cells. Easy access to high quality fat boosts cognition, happiness, learning, and memory. In contrast, studies link a deficiency of omega 3 fatty acids to depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia."
Your body gives you signs whether or not you are getting enough quality fat. The higher quality the fat, the better your body will function, because the body uses the fat you eat to build cell walls. Your body has more than 10 trillion cells, and they all need high quality fat. Your body will tell you when it's not getting enough good fats. The warning signs can include: dry itchy skin, brittle nails, hard earwax, tiny bumps on the backs of arms or torso and achy, stiff joints.
When it comes to fats, choosing good oils is important. Here is my guide to using good oils
Olive Oil is not recommended for cooking because high heat can break down it's chemical structure and change it's health benefits. Olive oil is effective in reducing inflammation in the body, it helps to lower cholesterol, it reduces the risk of heart disease and is rich in antioxidants and vitamin E. It is important to use extra virgin, cold pressed olive oil.
Sesame Oil is a delicious oil that is fabulous with grains. It is not good to cook with because it has a low smoke point. Sesame oil helps to lower blood pressure and cholesterol. It is a good source of vitamin E and it is rich in Omega-6 fatty acids.
Coconut Oil is great for cooking and baking at high temperatures. It contains vitamin E, vitamin K and Iron. Coconut oil is an immune system booster and a great skin moisturizer. It is high in saturated fat.
Grapeseed oil is great for cooking at high heats. It is know to fight cancer and lower cholesterol; it is anti-inflammatory and high in protein and fiber.
Sunflower Seed Oil has a light and slightly sweet flavor and it is great for cooking at high heat. Sunflower oil is high in vitamin E, contains vitamin B, is low in saturated fat and helps to lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Avocado Oil has a slightly creamy flavor. It is great for cooking at high heat and is rich in heart healthy fats. It contains beta-sito sterol which is a cholesterol lowering agent. Avocado oil also contains antioxidants for repairing blood vessels and removing free radicals.