Many people have the misconception that fat is bad for you and it will make you “pack on the pounds.” In terms of fat from margarine or bacon grease this is true but healthy fats are good for us! Our bodies need good fats. Healthy fat in moderate amounts help to provide our bodies with normal growth and development, healthy skin, maintain cell membranes, and increase our metabolism! Good fats are needed by the body for proper brain function, making hormones, and providing energy.
We also need healthy fats to absorb fat soluble vitamins such as A, D, E, and K. So next time you eat a salad don’t think you’re doing your body a favor by using the low- fat or fat-free dressing. Not only will you miss out on absorbing the fat-soluble vitamins from your veggies, but most fat-free dressing contains added sugar to compensate for the lack of taste. Instead make a salad dressing using healthy fat! One of my favorite ways to make quick and easy homemade salad dressing is to mash up half of one avocado, add fresh lemon juice, a dash of himalayan salt, and mix it all together. You can also add a little bit of cayenne pepper if you prefer more of a kick!
So what are the bad fats?
Bad fats are either saturated or partially hydrogenated AKA trans fats. Saturated fats are solid at room temperature and are found in animal products (butter, skin on meats, beef fat) . Trans-fats are unsaturated fats that have been hydrogenated to turn them into a solid. This process allows for the product to have an extensive shelf life. A good example is a twinkie. Twinkies can stay on the shelf at the supermarket for years and never go bad. I don’t know about you but I don’t want to eat anything that has a longer shelf-life than me.
Companies are allowed to keep trans fats in their “food” as long they are less than half of one gram. These companies are sneaky! If you read the labels and see partially hydrogenated oil in the ingredient list that means the product contains trans fat! These bad fats cause our arteries to clog, accelerate aging, create inflammation, and cause cellulite to form.
Try to stay away from these fats as well as heavily processed and inflammatory omega-6 fats found in soybean and corn oil.
Instead, eat healthy fat found in nuts such as almonds or walnuts, seeds, avocado, and olive oil. Also consume omega-3 fatty acids found in walnuts, wild salmon, chia seed, flax seed, or hemp seed, for their anti-inflammatory properties.
Now I would love to hear what your favorite healthy fat is or one you would like to try!
To your health!
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Filed in: Health and Wellness