Eat Fat for a Healthy Lean Body

With all the different nutritional advice available these days, how can you even begin to know what food choices to make? Lets look at fat for example. For years it has been painted as an evil monster and the root cause of high cholesterol, heart disease and obesity, as low-fat and non-fat foods became the norm, and we were told that a low-fat diet would help us get the body we want – one of the biggest nutrition lies that we’ve ever been told. Thankfully common sense has started to prevail and “good” fats are back on the menu. So what exactly constitutes good and bad fats?

Good fats” are unrefined animal fats, fat from fish, and selected fats from plants, such as avocados, olives, nuts and tropical oils. They tend to include higher proportions of saturated and monounsaturated or tend to be higher in omega 3’s. The “Bad fats” are what we label vegetable oils, however none of the following are actually vegetables – corn, canola, soybean, peanut, safflower and sunflower. Oils which have all been refined such as these have nasty side effects on the body!

Types of Fat:

Monounsaturated fats are found often in foods like olive oil, nuts, avocados, eggs & red meat. Monounsaturated fats have a positive correlation with testosterone production – the more you eat the more testosterone you will produce.

There are two main types of Polyunsaturated fats: omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids. Good sources of omega-3 fatty acids include fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, and sardines, flaxseeds and walnuts. Ensure you get an omega 3 to 6 ration of 2:1, in other words eat double the omegas 3’s to 6’s.

We’ve been told we shouldn’t eat Saturated fats for far too long. Why? It is claimed to raise cholesterol levels and give us heart attacks.

But does eating fats (any fat not just saturated) increase your cholesterol?

Yes, absolutely it does! You actually need cholesterol in your body to create all the most important hormones (testosterone & estrogen). If your hormones are low, your body will want to make more cholesterol to produce more hormones. The same goes for vitamin d – if you are vitamin d deficient your body makes more cholesterol to make more vitamin d. LDL (the bad cholesterol) is what makes the hormones – progesterone, testosterone & estrogen. So if you lower your LDL too much what happens? Your sex drive drops!

Saturated fats include fatty meats, lard, full-fat dairy products like butter, cream and breast milk, coconuts, coconut oil, palm oil and dark chocolate. Breast milk is 50-60% saturated fat! Why? The baby needs it for energy and brain development! If your pregnant or planning on getting pregnant you absolutely need to be eating fats!

When thinking about fat content of certain foods like beef, chicken or salmon its important to realised that how the animal/fish is fed makes a huge difference in its fat. For instance if you feed a cow corns and grains, its omega 3 to omega 6 ratio is far less favourable than if you feed your cows grass. In addition, when cows are fed corns or grains the level of inflammation in that animal goes up. If you eat that inflamed animals beef those toxins get passed onto you! So always eat grass fed beef, wild salmon and free range chicken.