The most common misconception about fat is that it is unhealthy. But did you know it can help you lose weight, stay healthy, and improve your brain health?
Yes, that's correct, and we'll show you how!
What do you Mean by Healthy Fats?
Fats has had a terrible rep for a long time. Mostly because scientific studies in the 1940s suggested that a low-fat diet helped avoid heart disease. The government, doctors, the media, and the health industry then promoted that concept throughout the 1980s and decades beyond, despite a lack of medical proof to back up their claims.
But we now know better. We've learned about the benefits of fats.
We now have a better understanding of how fat affects weight loss, muscular growth, cognitive health, and general fitness. Also, how necessary fatty acids help to prevent infections and inflammation.
Despite the fact that no one macronutrient is more vital than the others, fat is the most underrated and misunderstood.
For proteins and carbohydrates It's all about the quantity. You can eat as much protein as you want while limiting your carb intake.
On the contrary, when it comes to fats, it's all about the quality.
While this is true, excessive fat, both monounsaturated and polyunsaturated, can lead to weight gain.
Although the Dietary Guidelines for Americans don't provide a daily calorie limit, they do advise that you "limit calories from added sugars and saturated fats, and reduce sodium intake."
The solution is to eat a diet with a good balance of saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fats.
What is The Purpose of Body Fat?
Fats, together with protein and carbohydrates, are two of the three major macronutrients essential for the correct functioning of the nervous, immune, and cardiovascular systems. Fats are a good source of energy as well as a taste enhancer. When there is enough fat in the body, important functions run smoothly. The keto diet's most important component and primary source of energy is fat. There is a lot of fat and relatively few carbs. Will you gain weight if you consume too much fat? Many individuals believe that any macronutrient, including fat, protein, and carbs, might cause us to gain weight. We gain weight when we have a calorie surplus, which occurs when we consume more calories than we burn. As a result, fat does not make us fat
Good Fats vs Bad Fats
All fats are not the same. The healthy fats contain a wide range of fatty acids, each with its own metabolic function, such as:
- Providing vital fatty acids like omega 3 to the organism.
- Helps in the transfer of fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K.
- It takes two steps to provide and store energy.
- Cells, neurons, and tissues all rely on it.
- As a kind of cold-weather protection.
- Protecting Internal organs like the brain and kidneys.
Here are the types of fat to help you select which fats to eat and which fats to avoid in your diet.
What Are Healthy Fats?
Sugar-Free Fatty Acids
This type of unsaturated fatty acid is important in a variety of metabolic functions in the body due to its chemical structure.
- They are required for the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins.
- Aids the neurological system in fat burning, inflammation reduction, and general performance.
- Lowering LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) in the blood helps to avoid atherosclerosis.
- Increasing muscle insulin sensitivity, ensuring that the energy supplied is utilised to develop muscle.
There are two types of unsaturated fatty acids:
Monosaturated Fatty Acids (MUFA)
These fatty acids are easily absorbed and boost metabolism. They are essential for the production of testosterone, a necessary hormone for muscle building.
They, like polyunsaturated fatty acids, can lower blood cholesterol and help the body use fat-soluble vitamins.
Monounsaturated fatty acids can be found in avocado, olive oil, and rapeseed oil.
Are Saturated Fats Healthy?
Saturated fatty acids, or SFAs, supply energy and act as messengers in the human body. At room temperature, saturated fat foods like cheese and butter are solid.
The most prevalent sources are animal products such as sausages, pork, and milk. The best plant-based source, on the other hand, is coconut oil.
These fatty acids are known to be unhealthy, yet when consumed in moderation, they have no negative health effects.
Polysaturated Fatty Acids (PUFA)
Patients suffering from rheumatism, arthritis, and neurodermatitis benefit from this type of fatty acid since it has anti-inflammatory properties.
A shortage of essential fatty acids can cause infections, eye issues, muscle weakness, and skin rashes.
This type of fatty acid includes omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
Both regulate blood pressure, blood circulation, and cell membrane composition. To gain the benefits of these two, they should be ingested in a balanced manner.
Excess omega-6 can be harmful to the body, cancelling out the previously mentioned benefits.
Plant-based omega-3 sources include seeds such as chia, flax, and hemp, as well as oils such as linseed and hemp oil.
Omega-6 can be found in nuts and seeds like walnuts and pumpkin seeds, as well as vegetable oils including sunflower, corn, safflower, and soybean oil.
Trans Fat—The Unhealthy Fat
Trans fatty acids, sometimes known as trans fats, are produced naturally and through food processing. They're in processed and ready-to-eat foods like French fries, chips, cookies, and croissants.
Excess trans fat consumption raises blood lipid levels and increases the risk of cardiovascular disease.
However, you can avoid the detrimental effects of trans fats by cooking with the correct oil.
Consider the following:
Cook at a medium temperature with olive oil or butter.
When deep-frying at high temperatures, use heat-resistant oils such as refined rapeseed oil, coconut oil, or ghee.
For cold meals such as salads and spreads, choose vegetable oils high in polyunsaturated fatty acids. Two examples are linseed oil and hemp oil.
For roasting and baking, use extra virgin olive oil, sunflower oil, sesame oil, ghee, and coconut oil.
How Much Fat Should You Eat?
The dietary reference intake for a healthy adult diet is a minimum of 20% to a maximum of 35% of your energy demands in the form of fat.
This equates to 75-77 grammes if you consume 2,000 calories per day.
Saturated fat should contribute to no more than 10% of your daily energy requirements.
- Monounsaturated Fat (MUFA): 15% – 20%
- Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFA): 5%–10%
- Saturated fat accounts for less than 10% of total calories
- 0 % trans fat
- Cholesterol: 300 mg or less per day
We've all heard that consuming too much fat can be harmful.
Our bodies store these in a number of locations—astonishing, isn't it? It can be seen under the skin, around the waist, and in the liver, pancreas, and heart.
When they build in these areas, they cause a number of disorders ranging from chronic inflammation to cardiovascular disease.
But did you know that having too little fat can also be harmful?
A lack of essential fatty acids might produce the following symptoms:
- Reduced learning capacity; nervous system illnesses
- Hair loss
- Problems with vision
- Immune system dysfunction
- Damage to the kidneys and liver
- Poor wound healing
If you reduce your fat intake as part of your diet, the stored fat is used first, albeit you may have a deficit as a result. Because the insulation layer has been removed, you may feel colder more frequently.
Should You Substitute Good, Plant-Based Fats For Bad Fats?
Plant Based Fats Can Stabalize Cholesterol Levels.
In comparison to animal fats, vegetable or plant-based fats have a positive impact on the body. Consider foods that include a high amount of plant-based fats that are naturally high in omega-3 and omega-6 to maintain a good cholesterol level.
Plant Based Fats Contain Essential Vitamins and Minerals.
Fat is a good source of nutrients that your body requires to function properly. Plants give these nutrients in greater quantities than animal products.
Excellent Energy Sources are Fats from Plants.
Fats are required to avoid feeling lethargic and tired. A balanced diet contains 20 to 40 percent of its energy from fat, which can also be found in plant-based sources.
8 Ways to Include More Healthy Fats In Your Daily Diet
What is the greatest approach to get the right fats? Saturated fats should be replaced with unsaturated fats as much as feasible. This is possible by swapping plant-based items for animal-based goods.
This gives your body with helpful essential fatty acids, which are fats that your body needs to function properly and can only be gotten through diet.
Avoid Trans-Fat As Much As Possible.
Trans fat is bad for your health since it contains various hidden fats that are bad for you and increase your risk of cardiovascular disease.
Limiting or eliminating trans fat consumption may need a decrease in the intake of cookies, pastries, and fast food meals.
Using Unsaturated Fat Instead of Saturated Fat
Saturated fats have also been linked to a higher risk of heart disease.
Because they include more unsaturated fats, soft fats such as low-fat margarine and oil are advised for cooking.
Make Use Of Good Oil
One of the simplest ways to integrate healthy fats into your diet is to use healthy vegetable oils such as olive, canola, corn, sunflower, and safflower oils.
Instead of your usual salad dressing, try a sprinkling of oil. You can also substitute flaxseed oil for olive oil because it has an excellent omega 3 to 6 ratio and is one of the greatest sources of alpha linolenic acid, an essential fatty acid.
Use Low Fat Alternative
Soft fats, such as low-fat margarine, are used in baking, while oil is utilised in cooking. They include a larger proportion of unsaturated fats.
Keep in mind, however, that your intake should be limited to a minimum. A quarter drop in the pan equals one serving.
Add More Vegetables to Your Diet
Eat your favourite fatty vegetables in a variety of ways, including raw, to obtain a healthier fat in your diet.
Green vegetables and beans have less useful fats than other vegetables, although they are of high quality.
Avocados are regarded as a superfood due to their high content of beneficial fats. A 230 g pureed avocado has 35 g of fat, which accounts for 55% of your daily fat requirements.
Seeds contain a high concentration of omega-3 fatty acids. Per tablespoon, flaxseed has 4.3 g of fat and 55 calories (10.33 g).
Chia seeds provide around 4 g of fat and 65 calories in the same amount. Combine them with a salad, smoothie, yoghurt, or yoghurt
Read Your Lables
Look for foods high in healthy fats. If the nutrition label has a lot of saturated fat, it's a harmful fat.
Mono and polyunsaturated fats, as well as saturated fats, should be avoided.
Many meals are high in fat; the secret is to find them in sources that you enjoy eating.
If you are unable to get enough healthy fats in your diet for whatever reason (taste, cost, time limits, or preparation), take nutritional supplements to supplement your diet with essential fatty acids.
Supplements should be used only as a last resort, as excellent fats gained through food are regarded to be more advantageous than extra fats.
The body does not absorb supplements as well as it should. Use supplements only when your natural intake is insufficient, if at all possible.
If you have any questions about whether these or other supplements are right for you, always consult your doctor.
While vitamins and minerals are always important in keeping us healthy and active, fats and oils also play an important role.
When trying to lose weight, removing all fat from your diet may cause more harm than good. As previously said, no macro is more important than the others. The body need a certain amount to survive.
Saturated fatty acids are not hazardous when consumed in moderation as part of a healthy diet.
Consuming less calories, choosing healthy fats, eating a well-balanced meal, and exercising on a regular basis are all significant factors in accomplishing your weight loss goals.
Avoid meals that contain trans fatty acids as well. Because they are manufactured with industrially hardened oils, processed meals, fast food, deep-fried foods, ready-made foods, cookies, and pastries fall into this group.
To rely on high-quality, best healthy fat sources, combine your mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids and incorporate these healthy fats into your regular diet.
Begin today, and you'll see a difference in your body, brain, and overall well-being in only a few weeks!
Do you feel better about your relationship with fat now that you've read this article? What role does fat play in your diet?
What kind of experiences have you had with different types of fat?
Do you have any other recommendations for incorporating healthy fats into your diet?
How do you know whether you're getting enough good fat while avoiding bad fat?
Please share your thoughts in the comments box below.