Nutrition

The truth about fat

good-fatsA lot of people think that avocados and nuts will make them put on weight. Yes, you find them in the “fatty section’, but fat doesn’t necessarily go straight to the bum! Fats are actually an essential component of a healthy diet; they are a good source of energy, they help the brain and other cells to function well, they make your skin glow and they even favour weight loss. Now, don’t get me wrong, you can’t eat all kinds of fats recklessly; there are bad ones and good ones.

There are two kinds of bad fats: saturated and trans. In a nutshell, saturated fats can be found in meat fat, dark chicken meat, dairy products and palm oil among other things. Trans fats (the kind you avoid like the plague) is found in all kinds of naughty foods such as chips, pastries, deep-fried, margarines, … the list is endless. Just remember that they are bad for your heart….and is inevitably transformed in body fat !

So is there really such thing as good fat? Absolutely! There are two kinds: monounsaturated and polyunsaturated.

The monounsaturated fats are found in red meat, nuts (cashew, peanuts), high fat fruits (olives, avocados) and sesame seeds. They lower the risk for breast cancer and heart disease, they reduce belly fat and believe it or not, they also help with weight loss.

The polyunsaturated fats are found in sunflower and pumpkin seeds, pine nuts. Omega-3 fats form also part of this group, they are found in fatty fish (tuna, salmon, mackerel), chia seeds, flax seeds, walnuts and eggs – but make sur you get omega-3 eggs (or organic or both).  They reduce blood pressure, improve your memory, and I’ve read on many occasions that they help with depression and ADHD symptoms.

Now, the fact that these fats are healthy doesn’t mean that you should you go over the top in consuming them. As Hippocrates said, “Everything in excess is opposed to nature”.

 

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