Don’t Be Fat, Eat Fat
Society has created such a stigma around the word - fat - that we tend to associate it with something bad. When it comes to the world of nutrition, fats are still feared to this day, but not for sound reasons.
There are three types of macronutrients - carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Each macro contains a certain amount of calories per gram. Carbohydrates and proteins both contain four, while fat contains nine calories per gram (perhaps one of the many reasons they are feared). Fat plays many essential roles in the body, including transporting nutrients and being a secondary source of energy for the body. When carbohydrates, the body's first energy source, become depleted, the body turns to fat to burn. Fat also digests slower than other macronutrients, which helps you feel fuller for a longer period of time.
Myth: Eating fats will make me fat.
Busted: Dietary fat comes in several forms, and depending on the structural composition, can be considered healthy or unhealthy. Healthy fats are unsaturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Healthy fats are most commonly found in oils (olive, grapeseed, etc.), avocados, nuts, and fish, such as salmon. These good fats can lower the risk of obesity and improve cholesterol levels.
Unhealthy fats are saturated or trans fats. These are most commonly found in processed foods, red meats, and in foods that contain hydrogenated oils.
Myth: Low-fat foods are better options
Busted: Fat is largely what makes food taste good. When a company produces a low-fat product, or a low-fat version of their original product, people go wild. Low-fat Oreos, say what!? Not so fast. When manufacturers take the fat out of the food, the flavor often suffers. As a result, they add in bunch of extra sugar to make the food more palatable. Sugar and corn syrup are not your friend. Just say no to low-fat.
How much should I eat?
Fats should account for 20-35% of your total caloric intake. You can easily incorporate fats into your diet by making an oil and vinegar dressing for your salad or by drizzling olive oil on your vegetables. Fat will not make you fat, if you are eating the right kinds. Fats are your friend, and not to be feared. Up your nutrition game by incorporating some healthy fats into your diet and enjoy the results.