A Double Edged Sword

by Joanne on March 27, 2009

In the local paper today, there was an article about low-fat diets offering many benefits.  This article does not mention anything about how important fat is in our diets. 

The “Double Edged Sword”?   We all want to reduce fat but if we do, we gain weight.    Swordsman:10505

Your body is such a smart machine.  It has a natural instinct for survival. If you deplete it of the necessary requirements to survive, it will devise a back up plan.  If you neglect to include fats and make up the difference in carbohydrates, you will go into “starvation mode” which will triger your liver to overproduce cholesterol and store it as fat.

Have you wondered, with all the popularity of low-fat diets and low-fat foods, why our society is putting on weight?  The reason is because the big words which are prominent on product labels are “NO FAT”. “FAT FREE”. “NO TRANS FAT”.   Consumers see those words and pick up the item thinking they are en route to a healthier, slimmer self.  No so.  What also should be written in big, bold letters are…”ADDED SUGAR.” “ADDED SALT”. “CORN SYRUP”.  “PARTIALLY HYDROGENATED SOYBEAN OIL”.  

Let’s give the manufacturer some credit. In order to make the product tasty and still be able to advertise less fat, something has to be increased or added (sugar and/or salt).  The sugar can add calories.  Salt, in excess, is not good for cardiovascular health.  If you do not have a means to work off added calories through exercise, you will soon discover that you are toting an extra couple of pounds, even though your diet choices have changed. 

Healthy fat makes you feel full. You will eat less.  The problem with no fat is more sugar, more calories and the result = an unsatisfied appetite.   Bingo!  You just broke the scale.  fat001s




We need fat for mental health. We need fat to lubricate our joints (in layman’s terms).  We need fat to deliver healthy nutrients throughout our bodies which come from the foods we eat so we will continue functioning in a healthy manner. 

Here is my unprofessional advice, merely offered as a nutrition enthusiast:  Fore-go the “Fat Free Chips” and grab  a handful of almonds.  If you need a little sweetness, dip a teaspoon into a jar of all natural peanut butter and lick it off… n  i  c   e        a   n  d      s     l     o    o    w    w    l    y

My personal daily fat intake is very low.  I supplement with EFA’s.   Essential Fatty Acids.  They provide just what the name implies:  Essential Fatty Acids.  Our bodies cannot produce these fats and therefore we must obtain them from outside sources.   The gel caps insure that I get my daily requirement of Omega 3’s, Omega 6’s and  Omega 9’s without the added calories. 

This seems like a long winded blurt about fats, but it really is important not to get wrapped up in the diet – slim thing.  Feel good about yourself and eat healthy.   There are TONS of great recipes out there and they include the use of butter and oils.  Give yourself a break.   Make something you’ve deprived yourself of this weekend and thoroughly … I mean THOROUGHLY enjoy it.

Here are some great resources for additional reading:

UPHS Nutrition

Women to Women

Kraft foods

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  • At 2009.03.31 07:41, matt said:

    This blog’s great!! Thanks :).

    • At 2009.04.30 14:01, Jacqueline said:

      Great post. I agree, there is SO MUCH misinformation out there about fat. From the womentowomen.com link you posted, here is a really good article on the topic:
      The truth about cholesterol and fat Good stuff! It really makes me cringe, though, to think of all those years I deprived my body of EFAs. Oh well, at least I was avoiding trans fats too!

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