All Fats Are Not Created Equal
With following the menus of the Simple Green Smooties’ 21-Day Cleanse I realized I
have had a deep rooted fear of fats. Despite the research and evidence supporting that we need to include fats in our diet, I still had some hesitation with eating nuts, seeds and/or avocados daily. A fear that is a remnant of the low-fat and fat is bad trend in the 80s. I distinctly remember fats are bad because they’re high in calories and increase your chances of heart disease. Fast forward 20+ years and research says that is not the case.
Dietary Fats 101
Dietary fat is one of the three macronutrients, along with protein and carbohydrates, that provide energy for your body. Fat is required to transport vitamins A, D, E and K, produce hormones, store energy, maintain healthy skin, and protect organs. Fat also gives flavor and texture making foods more satisfying. Every person needs fat in their diet and knowing the type of fat can significantly influence your health.
Monosaturated Fats (MUFAs) and Polysaturated Fats (PUFAs)
Good for your heart, your cholesterol and overall good health.
Found in: olive oil, sunflower oil, peanut oil, sesame oil, avocados, olives, nuts and nut butters, seeds and fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel)
Saturated Fats and Trans Fats
Increase your risk of disease and elevate cholesterol.
Found in: high fat cuts of meat (beef, lamb, pork), chicken with skin, ice cream, lard, commercially baked products (pastries, cookies, muffins, cakes, pizza dough), some packaged snack foods, vegetable shortening, fried foods and candy bars
My fear of fats was probably preventing me from getting the nutrients my body needs. I have specifically avoided recipes that are high in fat and calories that; otherwise, look amazingly good. No more. I no longer fear the fats but rather embrace the benefits and what healthy fats can do for my body!
Don’t go no-fat. Go good fat.
What are your favorite healthy fat foods? How do you add healthy fats to your daily diet? Do you make it a point to include healthy fats in your diet?
Sources: MayoClinic.com and AmericanHeart.org