I know what you are thinking. Eat fat? No way. Maybe you have tried everything to get rid of stubborn belly including cutting down the amount of fat in your food to the bare minimum. Have you succeeded in losing weight following a low-fat plan? I don’t think so.
In simple terms, it seems logical that if you eat fat you will gain fat. But on the contrary, to lose weight, you don’t need to get rid of fat at all.
Though it sounds logical, it is completely wrong. The shift from eating full-fat meals that our grandparents ate to the low-fat varieties that are popular today is the main cause of rising obesity that we are facing now.
Have you ever wondered why eating low-fat food doesn’t make you leaner? In fact, you must have noticed that the less fat you consume the rounder you tend to become. In this article, I will answer this pertinent question.
Fat Bashing and Where it All Began
In the 70’s, the levels of obesity had started to rise beyond control. And, in order to fight it, nutrition experts started recommending low-fat diets to help people lose weight. Later, this gave birth to the first Food Guide Pyramid that encouraged eating more grains and limiting low-fat products.
The reasoning then was that since fat has more calories per gram compared to other macro-nutrients, it made sense that reducing or cutting it out was the key to long-term weight loss. It was a simple formula, cut down your fat intake and have a lean body.
Did the formula work? It never did work and has not worked to date.
Evidence over the years from the 70’s to 90’s paints a gloomy picture. The obesity epidemic has reached alarming proportions affecting even people in countries that have been known to have lean populations for ages.
So, what has been the consequence of cutting fat from our diets?
The Effect of Going Low Fat
Every time you eat, you are looking to get proper nourishment. You don’t want to just fill in on any available calories just to hit a set number of macro-nutrients. When you eat a low-fat meal, you are in effect throwing your body out of whack. For your body to be able to function well, you need a proper balance between the three macronutrients; proteins, fat, and carbohydrates.
When manufacturers remove fat from the food, it becomes bland and tasteless. To make the food tastier, they add sugar and salt to replace the fat.
Eating food high in sugar and stripped of fat will make you hungry after a short period of time. Such food is not filling at all. You will eventually become addicted to the sugar and as a result, your weight and waist will keep increasing.
What Does Science Say About Eating Low Fat Food
When you eat low-fat food, it means you are in effect eating more carbs to replace the missing fat. A high Carb diet has the worst effect on major heart disease risk factors including insulin resistance, triglycerides, and cholesterol.
Research published in the New England Journal of Medicine 2011 shows that eating foods high in refined grains, potato products, and sweetened beverages is the main cause of weight gain as opposed to eating nuts, whole milk, and cheese. In fact, the full-fat foods have no relationship on weight gain at all but are instead associated with weight loss.
So it seems that the high-fat foods we’ve been avoiding for decades may be the key to losing weight and keeping it off.
Over the years, I have also done my own tests trying out different food combinations to find out what works best for my body. I believe there’s no single diet plan that works for everyone. You should, therefore, use the available knowledge and go through trial and error to figure out what will work for you.
I have noticed that every time I’ve cut out processed carbs from my diet replacing them with lots of proteins and fats, that’s the time I am at my leanest with clearly visible abs. Not everyone wants visible abs, but it is no doubt a clear indicator that one is on top of their fitness and nutrition.
Why You Are Becoming Heavier
You are becoming heavier not because of a fault of your own, but because you’ve been duped for a long time. You might think you are making the right food choices and eating a clean diet without realizing that your “clean diet” is making you fat.
If for example, you eat a whole grain bagel with fat-free cream cheese and a glass of 100% juice for breakfast, you are simply setting yourself up for failure. These foods might sound healthier but they are processed and lack enough protein and fats to counterbalance the carbs. Unfortunately, this is the way you’ve been taught to eat for many years.
Having such a breakfast spikes your insulin levels and dips your energy level just an hour after eating. These results in cravings causing you to look for another sugar fix to pump yourself up again. Just like an addict. This endless cycle of cravings and fixes is the reason behind your uncontrolled weight gain.
Therefore, it makes perfect sense that to be able to lose weight permanently; you will need to balance your insulin levels by eating a moderate amount of carbs and protein and increase good fats in your diet.
The Best Oils to Eat for Better Health
1. Avocado: Avocadoes are an excellent source of polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats. They are loaded with phytonutrients that fight free radicals. They are also a good source of Vitamin B6, C, E and K, Potassium, folate and dietary fiber.
The fats in avocados are good for our muscles, nerves, brain and protect the skin from sun damage.
2.Olive Oil: It can be eaten or applied topically. It is a monounsaturated fat that contains high amounts of Oleic acid. Oleic acid reduces bad cholesterol and protects against heart disease by reducing the clogging up of arteries.
3. Coconut Oil
Even though Coconut oil is a saturated fat, it is not like the fat from animal and dairy products that is hard to digest. This oil is different. It has 90 percent medium chain saturated fats which the body can break down easily. It also has the ability to raise our metabolism and help us lose weight.
In addition, it supports healthy cholesterol formation in the liver and this raises high-density lipoprotein (HDL) which is essential for the healthy production of hormones.
4. Other Oils: In addition to my top three recommendations above, there are other foods you must regularly incorporate in your diet to boost your overall fat intake. These include eggs, salmon, full-fat yogurt, full-fat milk, cheese, almonds, Brazil nuts, olives, and chia seeds.
All commonly available vegetable oils contain a high level of omega 6 with little to no Omega 3’s. Eating a lot of Omega 6 without a proper balance from Omega 3s is bad for your health. Such a diet will increase inflammation in the body over time. When the level of inflammation in the body is high, it acts as a catalyst for most diseases including diabetes, heart disease, and some types of cancer.
There you have it. Reduce the intake of processed carbohydrates and grains in your diet and you will be amazed at how easy it will be to become leaner, energetic and super healthy.