Updated: Mar 25, 2022
Fats, just like proteins or carbohydrates are essential for your body to function properly. They give your body energy and support cell growth. They also protect your organs and help keep your body warm. Fat-soluble vitamins and other nutrients are transported via fat and they help produce important #hormones. All sounds pretty good, right? So why do fats get a bad rap? If we consume too many it can lead to weight gain, heart disease, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, and other serious #health issues. So like the old saying goes, “Everything in moderation.” Let’s take a closer look at fats. The good, the bad, and the ugly.
Monounsaturated fat is the healthiest fat you can consume. It can help reduce #cholesterol levels in the blood, lower the risk of heart disease and stroke. It also provides nutrients to help develop and maintain your body’s cells. Another bonus: Many foods with monounsaturated fat also contain high levels of vitamin E, an antioxidant vitamin.
You’ll find this “good” fat in extra virgin olive oil, peanut oil, canola oil, sesame oil, sunflower oil, avocados, peanut butter, flax seeds, walnuts, almonds, and other seeds and nuts.
#Polyunsaturated fat is the next best fat. Like mono fats it can help reduce cholesterol levels in the blood and lower the risk of heart disease. Poly fats include essentials fats your body can’t produce itself such as Omega 6 and Omega 3. Omegas play a vital role in brain function and the growth and development of the body.
CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) is a good fat that provides energy without the presence of carbohydrates it's the perfect ingredient for SHAPE.
CLA Can be found naturally occurring in grass-fed beef and dairy products and in other foods such as safflower, corn, and sesame oils, sunflower seeds, pine nuts, soybean, brazil nuts, and pecans.
We are using CLA from Safflower as it contains a higher concentration of CLA than what is found in beef and dairy.
Saturated fats are in the foods we’ve grown to love and struggle to give up. They’re in fattier meats and whole dairy products, #cookies, chips, fried foods, fast food, and all that party junk food we chomp down. Unfortunately, they may raise levels of cholesterol in your blood, which can contribute to heart disease and since many foods are also high in cholesterol, it will raise your LDL, the bad cholesterol levels even more.
Trans fats are the worst of the worst. Trans fats were originally used to help prolong the shelf life and add flavor to products like baked goods, chips, crackers, etc. Stick margarine, shortenings, French fries, fried foods, biscuits, pie crusts, and pizza dough, among others, may contain trans fat. If you see “partially hydrogenated oil” on the label put it back or use it sparingly. They are quite unhealthy and contribute to heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.
Although several major food companies and fast-food chains have reduced or eliminated trans fat from their products not everyone has so you’re favorite” Mom and Pop” place may still use them. On a positive note, #Walmart, the largest grocery chain eliminated trans fat from their store brand food products by 2015. According to the American Heart Association, less than 1% of your daily caloric intake should come from trans fat.
It’s important to read the labels and see where the total fat content is coming from and even then it may not add up. For instance, you may have a product that shows a fat total of 9 grams. Saturated fat is 1.5 grams.
Trans fat 0 grams. Polyunsaturated is 3.5 grams and monounsaturated is 2.5 grams. That only adds up to 7.5 grams. What gives? The FDA requires foods with at least 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving be listed so unless the product claims no trans fat, there could be fats. Also, fatty substances like phospholipids, #glycerol, and #sterols, which are best known as cholesterol, don’t have to be listed in the nutrition count but they DO contribute to the total fat content. So the missing 2.5 grams are probably those acids.
It’s really not that difficult to lower the fat with a few substitutions. Your taste buds may revolt at first but keep at it. Soon, you’ll wonder how you ever found a plate full of fatty, fried food appealing. While shopping avoids partially hydrogenated oil, cocoa, palm, palm kernel, and coconut oils. Give the lower-fat versions a try.
When you cook with ground beef, drain, blot, and rinse with hot water. Consider switching out the bacon for Canadian #bacon, prosciutto, or lower sodium turkey bacon.
When baking or making an omelet remember 2 egg whites equal one egg.
Reduce the fat in your favorite baked goods. If the recipe calls for 1 cup of butter try 2/3 instead.
Use skim for whole milk.
Apple sauce and pureed pumpkin can be substituted for equal amounts of fat but you’ll need to reduce the liquid if you use #apple sauce or it will be too moist. Make good use of all your garden-fresh zucchini and substitute that for equal amounts of fat in your quick pieces of bread.
Just remember your total fat intake including the good guys should be no more than 25-30 percent of your daily caloric intake. Each gram of any fat is still 9 calories so make them count and take in more of the good fats as part of your daily diet.