Updated: Aug 8, 2019
Fat gets a bad rep based on name alone. Fat must make us, well, fat right!? Unfortunately it's not that simple. Low fat, high fat, no fat...what's the real story?!
Here's the scoop...fat is an ESSENTIAL micronutrient in our diets for optimal health, skin, energy, and many more bodily functions. We NEED it! Most of our brain is made of fat. But the issue arises in...the TYPES and AMOUNTS of fat you eat. So let's dive in.
Does fat make you gain weight?
At 9 calories per gram (versus carbs and protein at 4) fat is very calorically dense, thus easy to overeat. But the truth is, ANYTHING can make you fat, if you eat too much of it, and the wrong kinds.
Here when we talk about the 'wrong' kinds, we're talking about all of the lurking fats in our favorite nasty processed junk food like fast food, fried foods, cookies, candies, cakes and ice cream. Bummer.
So limiting your intake of those kinds of fats will not only help your waistline, but your risk for chronic diseases. And lowering intake of ALL fats could help you lose weight...if you were overeating it in the first place. Which is a big component of diets like #Keto. Keto emphasizes lower carb, and eating a lot more of good healthy fats, while still staying within a caloric deficit if weight loss is your goal.
The good vs. the bad
Basically there are two kinds of #fats. Saturated (solid at room temperature) and unsaturated (liquid at room temperature). The bad ones...saturated! And a tangent category...'trans' fats. These are the fats found in vegetable oils, processed foods, fast foods, and the yummy goodness mentioned earlier. As these are easy to overeat, limiting saturated fats to around 10% (or even none) of your diet, is recommended.
Good fats, or the unsaturated fats, come in two categories. Polyunsaturated, and monounsaturated. These are commonly found in whole foods such as olives, avocados, nuts, seeds, and your omegas (3 & 6) in fatty oily fish like salmon.
So in summary...
Fats are NEEDED in our diet for bodily operation and energy. But, what's most important is your total volume of food intake and the quality (types) of fats consumed.
Eat to much of anything and you'll gain weight. Keep your GOOD fat content high if you're a low carb girl, or balance them out with whole grain carbs, and most importantly sufficient protein. Remember the differences in types fats and which are the ones that live up to all of the bad rep claims out there (bad fats like saturated and trans), and the good ones (like unsaturated) that our body needs to function at its highest.
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