Not all fats are equal. You can eat healthy without eliminating fat from your diet. Don’t be mislead by all the advertisements for low-fat and fat-free foods. Your body needs dietary fat to function properly, especially your brain. But not just any fat.
Saturated Fats – Not All Bad
Twenty years ago the claim could unequivocally be made that all saturated (solid) fats were created equal. It raises cholesterol, clogs arteries, and encourages weight gain. But, recent studies have applauded certain saturated fats, especially butter which has fat soluble vitamins A, E and K2. Also dark chocolate, it contains iron, magnesium, copper, fiber and other nutrients.
As with any “good eats” portion control is the ultimate pathway to success.
Trans Fats – The Real Culprit
Choosing foods with the right fat can be confusing, especially when it seems the messages are changing. However, trans fat is consistently getting a thumbs down. It’s produced in a process which adds hydrogen to vegetable oil making the fat solid at room temperature. Also called partially hydrogenated oil, it’s a favorite because it gives food a longer shelf life.
It raises bad cholesterol (LDL) and lowers good cholesterol (HDL), and contributes to heart disease. It’s found in cookies, snacks, biscuit dough, and other processed foods.
Super Fat – Omega 3
Omega 3 fatty acids are found in cold water fish such as wild caught salmon. Studies have shown that Omega 3 fatty acid,
- Guard against depression and its symptoms
- It aids against dementia and memory loss
- Helps to relieve inflammation which causes arthritis
- Is heart healthy and reduces the occurrences of stokes and cancer
Other healthy fats are found in peanut oil, avocados, olives, nuts, and peanut butter. Fats can be good for you. Chose natural fats versus those found in packaged foods.