The Skinny On Fat
Back in the 80’s, snack food companies started marketing “fat free” foods. The belief was fat was the enemy, contributing to high cholesterol, heart disease, and making us fat. Perhaps we have been misinformed that saturated fats and cholesterol are the cause of chronic degenerative diseases. Fat is essential to our health. It is a major source of energy, and it is necessary for the transport of all the fat-soluble nutrients, which include vitamins A, D, E & K.
Not all fats are equal. The fats in extra virgin olive oil, nuts, seeds, fatty fish and vegetables are abundant with polyphenols and omega 3 fatty acids. This help to rapidly reduce inflammation, an underlying cause of disease. The danger comes when we eat too many omega 6 fats from vegetable cooking oils. A diet high in omega 6 fats contribute to high cholesterol, heart disease & obesity.
The answer for a healthy diet is to consume more of the healthy fats. Some of my favorite sources include:
- Cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
- Virgin coconut oil
- Nuts and seeds
- Avocado (see guacamole recipe below)
- Cold water fish – (wild salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring)
- Organic eggs
- Grass-fed beef
- Butter from grass-fed cows
Vegetable oils, high in omega-6 commonly labeled as “heart healthy” such as soybean oil, corn oil, canola oil, cottonseed oil, safflower oil and hydrogenated fats are industrially manufactured, often from genetically modified crops in the U.S., using high heat and toxic solvents to extract the oil from the seeds. They are commonly found in processed package foods and deep fried foods.
Ironically not eating (healthy) fat is what’s causing epidemic health issues and obesity. Healthy fats are vital to the healthy functioning of our entire body, including weight-loss. Know where your food comes from and how it was grown. The payoff is a healthier life for you.