Balancing Act III
Go on a low-fat diet to
loose weight and become healthier? Forget it!! That myth has been cleared up
for a while now. Unfortunately, you havenít been filled in, have you? Well,
here is the short version.
As we learned in part two
of this series, fat needs to be part of your diet and it should be in
proportion to carbohydrates and protein. What Iíd like to stress today is the
importance of the quality of the consumed fats.
Letís start with the good
fats such as olive oil, fish oil, sunflower oil, grape seed oil, and most nut
and seed oils. They are either mono- or polyunsaturated and are good for us
because they lower LDL, the bad cholesterol and increase HDL, the good
cholesterol. These oils should constitute the bulk of our fat intake as they
contain essential nutrients. Of course, they should be of high quality
(organic would be nice), unprocessed, and stored cool in proper containers
without light and oxygen.
Then there are the
saturated fats with include meat, seafood, eggs, whole milk, butter, cheese,
ice cream, and others. These fats also have healthful properties, especially
if they come from clean sources such as free-range chickens; grazing,
hormone-free cows, and pollution-inspected seafood but they must be consumed
Lastly, and dangerously
lurking everywhere, are the trans fats. They are found in hydrogenated
vegetable oils and margarines and they are nasty! These fats are artificial -
their chemical structure has been changed - and they are toxic with no
beneficial nutrients. Unfortunately, they are found in lots of foods such as
instant noodles, cookies, cakes, potato chips, ice cream, milk powder, French
fries, onion rings, salad dressings, and virtually all fast foods. You canít
avoid them, but you can and must reduce their intake!
In summary, eat
more of the good fats, less of the saturated fats, and try to avoid the trans
fats! Thatís all, and it really isnít that hard, is it?