After decades of thinking all fat is bad fat and causes us to get fat, it turns out that not all fats are created equal. Some of them are actually good for you and you need to consume fat to stay alive and healthy. Certain vitamins can only be absorbed by the body if consumed with some sort of fat. And there are various parts of your body, including your heart that need fat to run smoothly and stay healthy.
At first glance, it makes sense to cut fat from your diet when you want to lose excess body fat. That’s been the basis behind every single diet from 1950 to 1990. It lead to the development and sale of countless low fat and fat-free foods that still populate our grocery stores today. The idea of eating low fat has become deeply ingrained in us. The only problem is that it didn’t work.
Yes, you can lose weight on a low calorie, low-fat diet. Plenty of people have done it. But it takes a lot of willpower, and the vast majority of people can’t stick to it long term. They end up giving up and gaining more weight back then they lost in the first place.
Our bodies are genetically engineered to crave fat. It’s what keeps us going, keeps us warm, and keeps up our energy levels.
While fat does have a lot more calories than the same amount of carbs or protein, it takes a long time to digest fat. It keeps us full and satisfied much longer than any other type of food. Does that mean you should go on a bacon and butter diet with a sprinkle of deep-fried foods? Of course not.
First off, we need to strive for balance and shouldn’t compensate for our past low-fat diets that only made us fatter, by overindulging in fats. Balance is the name of the game when it comes to healthy weight loss. Secondly, not all fats are created equal.
While there is still a lot to be learned about fats and the role they play in the many chemical processes that take place in our bodies, we know that some fats are better for us than others. I’m sure you’ve heard of saturated fats, unsaturated fats, trans fats, and mono-unsaturated fats. Stay away from mostly man-made Trans Fats. There’s been a big push in this direction and it’s a good thing.
The main fat you want to increase is mono-unsaturated fats. These types of fats will help lower your bad cholesterol and increase the good one. They will help your body repair itself and run at its best. Think of it as high-performance fuel for your body. You can find this healthy type of fat in avocados, coconut oil, peanut butter, peanut oil, olives, and olive oil to name a few.
The most important lesson I want you to take away from this post is that fat isn’t bad for you. Some sources of fat are better for you than others, but overall, it’s not the enemy we so long though it was.
Guess What – Fatty Foods Can Be Healthy
I have news for you. Fatty foods can be healthy. Notice I said “can”. That doesn’t mean that doughnut or deep-fried Twinkie has suddenly become a health food. Far from it. But it does mean that you can throw those low-fat diets out the window and enjoy some healthy fatty foods like avocados, olives, peanut butter, and even real butter and bacon.
Fat is an important part of a healthy diet. It’s what keeps you from feeling hungry. Fats also allow you to absorb more nutrients from other foods. That’s why it’s so important that you dress that colorful and super healthy salad, with a full-fat dressing and for good measure throw few nuts or avocado slices on top. This will turn a simple salad into a healthy meal that will keep you going for hours. The fat will ensure that your body can absorb all the vitamins in that beautiful fresh produce on your plate.
Good fats like those found in olive oil and avocado, for example, nourish your brain, your eyes, hair, and even the walls of every single cell of your body. It’s also important for hormonal well-being because hormones are mainly made up of fatty acids. In short, consuming healthy fats is important and there are quite a few fatty foods out there that are actually good for you.
Let’s quickly run through a few sources of healthy fats that you want to eat more of. At the same time stay away from trans-fats and most poly-saturated fats, both of which have been linked to an increased risk in heart disease.
This is one of my favorite healthy fats. Add this delicious fruit to salads, sandwiches, wraps, or eat it on the side with eggs or grilled meat. Also delicious mashed up on toast or turned into guacamole and even in smoothies!
Start your day with a healthy fat boost by adding a teaspoon of coconut oil to your coffee. This oil is also great for cooking eggs or sautéing veggies. Pure coconut oil should be tasteless, while some other versions leave you with a hint of coconut flavor.
Olives And Olive Oil
Olive oil makes a great base for salad dressings. It can be used to finish and flavor all sorts of food. Both olive oil and olives have long been staples of the Mediterranean Diet. Look for cold-pressed, extra virgin olive oil. Olives make delicious portable snacks.
Nuts And Seeds – Speaking of nuts. Another healthy snack that you can keep at your desk, in your purse, and in your pantry is various nuts and seeds. They are full of healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. Eat them on their own, make your own healthy trail mix, or sprinkle them on your salad.
How Eating Fat Can Help You Lose Body Fat
For decades we’ve all worked under the assumption that to lose fat we have to cut fat out of our diets. Thus the low fat craze was born. As it turns out, that’s not how it works. The problem with eating a low-fat diet is that you have to replace that food with something else, and we all turned to carbs. Those carbohydrates raised our blood sugar levels and thus insulin levels. As it turns out, our bodies are very good at turning carbohydrates into body fat and insulin plays a big role in that process.
And it gets worse. While insulin is in your blood, your body can’t burn body fat for energy, making it impossible for you to lose weight. The first goal when you want to lose a few pounds then is to lower your insulin levels. The best way to do that is to replace some of the carbohydrates you’re eating with fat. In other words, you need to do the exact opposite of what we’ve been told by so-called health experts for decades. Skip the low-fat foods and grab some fat instead.
When you do that some interesting things happen in your body.
Let’s say you start your day with some eggs and avocado. It’s a low carb, high-fat meal that will keep you full for hours. You won’t even go looking for lunch until early afternoon. This will keep your blood sugar levels low and in turn your insulin levels low.
Why is this important?
Think of insulin as a gatekeeper. When it’s high, your body takes any extra carbs and sugars it can find and turns them into fat for storage. When insulin is low on the other hand, your body turns to those fat stores and burns them for energy. The end result is that you start to lose weight.
Since eating fat keeps you satisfied longer and allows you to stretch the time in between meals, you’re keeping those insulin levels low for longer. That’s how eating fat can help you lose more body fat on a regular basis. Stop being afraid of fatty foods. Make smart choices, don’t overdo it, and work on cutting more sugar and carbs out of your diet instead when you’re ready to get in shape and drop that excess weight and body fat.
Good fatty foods you want to incorporate into your diet are avocado, butter, coconut oil, olive oil, olives, seeds and nuts, and even peanut butter. Embrace healthy fats and make them part of all your meals.
The Benefits Of Eating Avocados
Avocados are delicious and it turns out that they’re very good for you. It doesn’t matter if you eat them on toast, on your salad, throw some in your green smoothie, or enjoy them as a dip. There are quite a few benefits to eating avocados aside from the fact that they are mighty tasty.
Avocados are a fruit that is very low in sugar and high in fiber. This makes it a perfect addition to your diet when your goal is to lower your blood sugar and insulin levels to lose a bit of weight. The fiber, combined with lots of healthy fats, will fill you up.
Avocados are also full of vitamins and antioxidants. They contain plenty of Vitamin K, C, B6, B6, and E along with Folate and more Potassium than a banana. That’s a lot of nutrition packed into one little fruit.
And we haven’t even gotten to the best part yet. Avocados are full of healthy fats. It’s those heart-healthy monounsaturated fats that make them a true superfood. And it’s that fat that will help you lose weight more quickly. Give it a try. Add half an avocado to your salad at lunch in addition to a source of lean protein like some grilled chicken or hard-boiled egg for example. You’ll find that you stay full longer with the addition of the avocado. It also makes it a much more satisfying meal with the creamy, decadent taste of this healthy fruit.
Avocado is a high-fat food that’s full of MUFAs (monounsaturated fats) that are good for your heart and your health in general. We don’t get enough of these healthy fats in the western diet, making them a great addition to your meals. This healthy fat will help lower cholesterol levels and help your body maintain areas like your heart, your brain, your eyes and other areas where the right kinds of lipids are crucial.
The fat is also important in the absorption of certain nutrients. Things like Vitamins A, D, E and K, as well as various antioxidants and phytonutrients, are fat-soluble. This means that our body can only absorb them if we consume them with a fat – ideally a healthy fat like that found in avocado. Adding half an avocado to your salad means you will absorb more of the vitamins in the fresh greens and veggies on your plate.
If you’re new to avocados, give them a try. If you’re already a fan, give yourself permission to indulge more often. Half an avocado is the perfect daily serving for most of us. Eat up!
3 Healthy Oils You Should Eat And Cook With
Here are three healthy oils that are perfect for cooking and finishing foods. If you’re not already using them, give them a try. They will make you feel better, make your food taste amazing, and might actually help you lose weight.
Let’s start with the most common of our three oils. If you’re not already using extra virgin olive oil, there’s no better time than the present to start. Go for cold-pressed and a high-quality olive oil. It contains lots of monounsaturated fat and has even been shown to reduce inflammation in your body.
The oil changes when exposed to very high temperatures. Avoid using it when frying food and stick to using it as a finishing oil instead. It makes a great base for salad dressings and is delicious when you dip bread in it.
Grapeseed oil is an oil that you can use for frying and cooking. While it isn’t a very popular cooking oil yet, it is something that’s widely available in grocery stores. Grape Seed Oil’s two big advantages are that it can withstand high cooking temperatures without oxidization and that it’s full of linoleic acid.
Linoleic acid seems to be particularly helpful in releasing and burning off abdominal fat. That means using a little of this oil in your everyday cooking may just help you lose a few pounds. This may also reduce your risk of diabetes and heart disease.
Like olive oil, peanut oil is full of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. It’s also full of Vitamin E which helps your body heal better and quicker. Peanut oil also contains phytosterols which can help lower your bad cholesterol.
Because of its high smoke point, peanut oil is great for frying and deep-frying food. Or get a spoon of all-natural peanut butter and enjoy. Use it on a sandwich, dip some fruit in it, or have a little peanut butter and dark chocolate for dessert.
Another great approach is to think about how you can replace some of the fats and oils you’re using right now with these healthier alternatives. Replace your store-bought salad dressing with a home-made olive oil-based version. Use peanut and grape seed oil instead of vegetable or canola oil. Make smarter choices and improve your health by incorporating more healthy fats into your diet.
Let’s Talk About Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is the new kid on the block when it comes to healthy fats. It’s also one of the most versatile oils out there, perfect to condition your skin and hair, good in coffee, and perfect for sautéing vegetables or cooking eggs. You can even use it to clean your teeth, make your own lip balm, and polish your furniture. Talk about a maverick ingredient.
What makes coconut oil so unique is the fact that it’s made up of medium-chain fatty acids that are extremely heart-healthy and easy to absorb into cells due to their small size. It’s also what gives coconut oil its ability to form a solid at room temperature, but melt when it hits your mouth or your skin.
While coconut oil has all sorts of different health benefits from lowering cholesterol and protecting your heart, improving digestion, reducing inflammation and even improving brain function, it’s also a wonderful weight loss aid. Who would have thought that eating pure fat in the form of coconut oil, can help speed up body fat loss? It seems to be particularly helpful in melting away the dangerous belly fat.
Coconut oil is a strong appetite suppressant. Eating a little throughout the day will help you feel full and satisfied sooner. This makes it much easier to avoid giving in to cravings or overeating. That alone will help you lose those extra pounds, but it gets even better.
Those medium-chain fatty acids I told you about earlier help the body use energy reserves more easily and even helps speed up the process of breaking down said body fat. In other words, eating coconut oil will make it easier for your body to burn its own fat.
To prime the body for fat loss, you want to consume some coconut oil as early in the day as possible. Try adding a teaspoon of it to your first cup of coffee in the morning. It will melt right in and help you start your day off right. From there, add a little here and there while you’re cooking food. You can sauté food in coconut oil, or use it like a finish oil similar to using butter or olive oil.
Give coconut oil a try and see if it doesn’t help you stick to your diet and lose those extra pounds. Along the way, you’ll get to benefit from the many other health benefits this oil has to offer.
A Case For Real Butter
Let’s talk about butter. It’s been a staple food or thousands of years, yet somehow it got a bad rep in the 50s or 60s and we were told that our butter and animal fat consumption, in general, was the reason heart disease was on the rise. The end result was that we were encouraged to eat a low-fat diet and if we had to use something like butter, it should be man-made margarine.
Did it work? Of course not. Instead, we’ve seen a steady incline of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and a slew of related health conditions. As it turns out that while butter does contain natural cholesterol, consuming it along with other animal fats (bacon anyone), and eggs do not increase your body’s cholesterol. Instead, eating healthy whole food fats, including butter helps increase good cholesterol and decrease bad cholesterol.
It’s time to give up on that low-fat diet, throw out the margarine, and bring back real butter. Not only is the fat in it much better for your body and your overall health, but real butter also contains a variety of minerals and vitamins that our bodies need. For example, butter is a rich source of absorbable vitamin A. You also get a fair share of Vitamins E and K from it.
Butter contains antioxidants that can help repair cellular damage and protect against weakening arteries. Butter also contains lecithin which helps metabolize cholesterol. This means that eating butter doesn’t hurt your heart and increases your chances of heart disease. Instead, it may help protect your heart from damage.
When you’re ready to embrace butter and bring it back to your table, pick up the highest quality butter you can find and afford. Raw butter from a reputable local farmer is best. Buy the butter during spring and summer when the cows feast on fresh grass and freeze it to use throughout the year.
If that’s not an option, get butter from grass-fed cows. Kerry Gold butter is a great option and something that’s readily available at most grocery stores these days. Stick with real butter and avoid spreadable kinds. Yes, they are convenient and much easier to spread than cold butter.
Instead, get in the habit of taking the butter out a little while before you need it. It will quickly become spreadable and it won’t take you long to get in the habit of remembering to pull it out first. It’s well worth the effort, not just because of the many health benefits of real butter, but also because of the taste. Nothing tastes better than real butter. Taste for yourself.
Bone Broth, Bullet Proof Coffee And Other Fatty Foods That Help You Lose The Weight
You’re trying to lose weight and are cutting calories right and left. It works for a little while, but it doesn’t take long for that weight loss to stop. The dreaded plateau happens when your body adjusts to the dietary changes you’re making and starts burning fewer calories in an effort to make it through this “famine”.
As it turns out, cutting calories and fat, in particular, is one of the worst things you can do when you’re trying to lose weight. Instead, you should make sure you get some healthy fats in your diet regularly. This allows your body to continue to burn body fat for energy. Instead of cutting fat, cut the sugar and carbs.
Embracing low carb, high-fat foods will help you speed up your weight loss and blast through even the most stubborn plateaus. Let’s take a look at some “fatty foods” you may want to make part of your weight loss diet.
A great way to start your day with plenty of healthy fats is by sipping a cup of bulletproof coffee. Brew a cup of black coffee, then add a teaspoon of coconut oil and a little pad of grass-fed butter. Blend it up into a creamy concoction full of healthy fats that will give your metabolism a boost and fill you up for hours.
Brew up a batch of homemade bone broth or stock from those leftover chicken or turkey bones. Sip on it throughout the day when you need a snack or a little “pick-me-up”. The nutrients, protein, and fat in the broth will keep you going and help you melt off those extra pounds.
Above all, make sure you include a source of healthy fat with every meal. Top that salad with an avocado and an olive oil-based dressing. Grill up some chicken thighs instead of breast for dinner and finish it off with a pad of butter. Enjoy a little full fat cheese and a few olives. Throw another avocado into your green smoothie. Start embracing these healthy fats.
Stay away from low-fat foods. Skip the turkey bacon, the low fat or non-fat salad dressing and dairy. Instead, go for full-fat versions and the real thing when it comes to bacon. Let those healthy fats back into your life. Not only will your food taste much better, each bite will be much more satisfying. You’ll end up eating less overall and your body will be primed and ready to release the access body fat it no longer needs to hold on to.
Boost Your Metabolism With Healthy Fats
For decades we did everything we could to cut fat out of our diet. The end result is that we were getting fatter and fatter in the western world. Dietary fat was cut out of our foods in an effort to reduce bad cholesterol and prevent heart disease. Instead, we gained weight, and with it created a slew of health problems including more cases of heart disease than ever before. It’s time to slim down, protect our bodies, and rev up our metabolisms. And there’s no better way to do it than to bring back the healthy fats.
As it turns out, our bodies need fat to let go of body fat. Without the addition of fatty foods to our diet, and particularly when we go on a low calorie, low-fat diet, our metabolism goes way down. The body goes into starvation mode and burns as little energy as possible. That’s why people often feel cold and tired when they are on this type of diet. It’s hard to find the energy to get up and move because the body thinks it’s time to conserve as much energy as possible. The end result is that even while consuming much less calories, the scale won’t budge.
The key to cranking up that metabolism is to make sure you eat enough food and that you include plenty of healthy fats. A good rule of thumb is to get at least 30% of your calories from sources of healthy fats like olive oil, grass-fed butter, avocados, almonds, or natural peanut butter to name a few. That’s right, you can indulge in delicious full-fat foods and still lose weight.
Make sure you eat early in the day and include some healthy fat with your first meal. Eating early ensures that your body’s metabolism starts cranking into high gear and keeps burning calories all the long. This breakfast with healthy fats also provides you with the energy to keep going strong all day. You won’t feel cold and sluggish. Instead, you’ll find yourself full of energy, ready to tackle whatever life throws your way. You’re going to want to move more and get through your workouts.
Moving more and staying active throughout the day while refueling your body when you get hungry, will ensure that your metabolism keeps burning high all day long. When that happens you’ll be able to eat enough healthy food to stay satisfied and still lose excess body fat.
Incorporating Healthy Fats Into Your Diet
If you’ve been sticking to a low-fat diet for the past few decades, it can be challenging to change what and how you eat. Here are a few simple tips and strategies to help you get started with incorporating more healthy fats into your diet.
A simple way to start is to replace all low and non-fat products with their full-fat version. Start buying whole milk instead of skim milk. Grab full-fat cheese and yogurt. Pick up some regular salad dressing instead of the light kind. Replace your fake butter spread or margarine with the real deal. These small changes alone will make a big difference in how you feel and how good your food tastes.
Meat is another area where you can incorporate more fat into your diet. Start embracing fuller fat cuts. Replace your grilled chicken breast with chicken thighs every once in a while. Go for a higher fat content in your ground beef and enjoy a marbled steak. Bring pork back into your life and enjoy fatty fish like salmon. Buy the highest quality meat you can afford, ideally organic and grass-fed. If that’s not an option, stick with leaner fish and meat and top it with some healthy olive oil or a bit of quality butter.
Something interesting happens when you start to add more foods that include healthy fats like nuts, seeds, and avocados for example. Your skin starts to look better, as do your hair and nails. Your eyes have more shine to them and your dark circles start to fade as you start to sleep better. You have more energy during the day and start moving around more. That exercise, in turn, helps you look even better.
Last but not least, all that healthy fat in your diet keeps you full and satisfied longer. That’s how adding high-calorie fatty foods actually help you eat less and burn excess body fat. It’s an amazing process that I hope you’ll start to experience for yourself. Embrace those healthy fats and start making them a part of every single meal and snack you eat. Your body will thank you for it.
Start right now by making a list of healthy fats you can get at the store. Start with avocados, walnuts, pecans, a good quality olive oil, some butter, a steak, and anything else that sounds good. Start using the whole eggs instead of egg whites for breakfast and fry them up in a little butter or coconut oil. Drizzle the olive oil over your salad and chop up avocado to go on top. Snack on some nuts and full-fat cheese. Grill up that steak and enjoy it with a baked potato and some butter.
Incorporating healthy fats into your diet is easy. You just need to start.