It?s official. No need to wait anymore for hell to freeze over or for cows to fly, because it?s a done deal. I, Laurie Warren, actually recently read a mainstream article on fats THAT I AGREED WITH. Holy flying cow, Batman! The article, published on The Huffington Post, makes great points about fats that a sparse few people really understand. Let?s spend a few minutes exploring the fabulous world of fats to help you get on yo Body Sass?!
First, fat is a macronutrient. Macro meaning major and nutrient meaning?well?nutrient. Major nutrient. Major nutrient to ingest if you want to build a healthy body. There are only three macronutrients: fat, protein, and carbohydrate. With each of these, there are health-building choices and disease-building choices, and I strongly suggest getting educated about the difference and sticking with the health-building choices. ?Well, pretty much all fats are bad except olive oil and canola oil, right?? Oh. So. Wrong. Let?s talk.
First, let?s look at some of the things that our bodies use fats for:
- We use fats to absorb and assimilate fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K. What that MEANS is, that if you?re not getting healthy fats than your not likely absorbing much of these very essential nutrients. Which is a drag.
- Fats (ready?) help us BURN FAT! That really puts a bit of a crimp in the no-fat diet craze, dontcha think? That?s right, the body requires fat to boost the liver?s ability to release fat. Eat fat to lose fat.
- Our brains are the fattest organ in our body, at about 60% fat. Hmmm. Let?s NOT give kids low-fat milk, kay?
- Our cell membranes (the brain of the cell) are primarily composed of fats. The cell membrane is actually called, in biochemistry geek talk (LOVE IT!), a lipid bilayer?lipid meaning FAT.
- Fatty acids are the preferred fuel FOR THE HEART (isn?t that funny?…given the whole ?fats cause heart disease? thing?)
- Fats are a raw ingredient of hormones and other biochemicals, such as vitamin D and bile.
- Fats are a component of myelin, the fatty material that sheathes nerve cells. This fat sheath makes it possible for your nerves to fire all of the electrical messages that enable you to think, see, speak, move, and perform all of the myriad of tasks involved in being a human body. Fairly important.
It?s also important to point out here that fat?tastes good! It?s satiating and filling and yummy. When you pull it out of everything, you end up HUNGRY and eating more and more?usually empty carbs?and your body is STILL hungry because it WANTS FATS. Enter our current phenomenon of low-fat diets and two-thirds of the population being overweight. And that is only the beginning. Gosh, let?s eat a low-fat diet and be afraid of fats. No, really?let?s not. Let?s talk about feeding the body what it needs to build health. Let?s talk about choices.
These are my favorite health-building fat choices: avocado & avocado oil, coconut oil & coconut milk, organic pasture-fed butter, extra-virgin olive oil, grass-fed beef, seeds & nuts (especially raw), wild Alaskan salmon, fish oil & cod liver oil, flax seed oil. Please note that those last two are not to be heated.
Now let?s take a look at the dark side. The dark side is where all of the fats and oils live that actually ARE health-eroding. So, the fat-phobia craze should really be all about them, and not about those fabulous fats that build health. And, what you do NOT put into your body is just as important as, if not more important than, what you DO put into your body. By this I mean, it?s great to choose good fats and you?re certainly giving your biology a big leg-up. However, if you?re eating your coconut oil, butter, and avocados (hooray!)?but are also eating trans-fats and canola oil (boo!)?you?re still inviting dysregulation into the body.
So, I want to be crystal clear on these fats and oils that a health-seeker should avoid. And some of them may surprise you. I suggest avoiding corn oil, cottonseed oil, ?vegetable? oil, soybean oil, safflower oil, canola oil, and hydrogenated or partially-hydrogenated oils. Please note that regardless of what the label says (?zero trans-fats!?), if the ingredient list contains hydrogenated or partially-hydrogenated oils, then you are holding a product containing trans-fats. Put it down and slowly back away. Canola oil has been touted as a healthy oil but it is not any such thing. Most canola is GMO and all canola turns rancid easily and quickly forms dangerous trans-fatty acids when heated. ?Yuck!? (that was your cells talking)
Folks, we need ALL of the macronutrients, and a whole giant array of micronutrients, to build healthy bodies. No sense leaving out the all-mighty fats just because mainstream health has been shouting ?the world is flat!? for so long. The world is actually quite round and fats are actually quite good for you. Just because you hear something over and over doesn?t mean it?s true. I can absolutely tell you that the health of our biochemistry and physiology depend on GOOD FATS! Which is why I was so excited to see this article. Check out what the author has to say!
And then go make your yummy, nutritious meal of wild salmon, steamed kale with butter, and sliced avocado drizzled with olive oil and topped with chopped fresh cilantro. And feel AMAZING about it!
The food you eat builds your body, every day, for better or for worse.? Make choices for health!
With love & support of fats,