For decades we’ve been advised to avoid fat because it was thought to cause weight gain. And guess what? It’s totally wrong! Science has finally proved that fat is NOT the enemy when it comes to cardiovascular disease, weight gain, brain health, and many other issues. In fact, fat plays an important role in every healthy, balanced diet! Here are ten reasons why fat is actually a good thing.
Fat Tells Us We’re Full
Feeling full after eating is an actual feeling our body creates, and has a very important function when it comes to the amount of food we consume. This feeling is in fact created during digestion, when fat triggers the release of a hormone that slows down how fast the stomach empties food into our intestines. Yep, fat tells our body when to stop eating!
Fat Helps Us Absorb Nutrients
We NEED a little fat to absorb the fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E and K), beta-carotene (a carotenoid that makes vitamin A) and other carotenoids found in leafy greens and salad veggies. If we dress our salad on the lighter side we might actually be doing more harm than good. And, just because it’s such good news, we have to repeat it: WE NEED FAT!
Fat Helps Us Balance Blood Sugar
Eating sugary foods with too many refined carbohydrates and not enough fat causes our blood sugar levels to spike and shortly after to crash. Then we just want to get those levels back up – by eating more sugar and carbs! We need the fat to feel sated and without it we just crave more sugary foods. That’s one vicious cycle.
Fat Is Essential For Good Health
There are some fats we only get from our food. These are called “essential fats,” and they include omegas-3 and -6. Most of us get plenty of omega-6 fats in our diets, from seed-based oils such as sunflower or corn. Omega-3 fats, however, are found primarily in fish and flaxseed oil which are less common in our diets. A low-fat diet can magnify the problem.
Fat Maintains Healthy Cells & Organs
Fat is an important component of every cell’s membrane or “wall,” which protects the cell against invaders. Basically, it means fat protects our organs by cushioning them. We also need certain fats to build and maintain a healthy brain, which is – get this – about 60% fat in composition!
Fat Fuels Most Of Our Daily Activities
Fat is the main type of fuel our bodies burn for energy in our day-to-day activities. Generally, during activity where your heart rate is less than 70% of its maximal rate, fat serves as our body’s primary source of fuel. That means that even by sitting in front of the computer, we’re actually burning fat!
Fat Is Essential For Development
Did you know that human breast milk contains 54 percent saturated fat? Since breast milk is the best diet in existence for developing infants, the presence of high amounts of saturated fat are definitely a proof to its necessity for our proper development.
Fat Makes Food Taste Good
Fat is responsible for the creamy texture and amazing smell of the foods we love to eat. When we remove these foods from our diet we often turn to refined and processed substitutes, which may contain large amounts of salt and sugar, added chemicals and carb-based fat replacers. We’re better off sticking with the real thing and just eating less of it!
This Is Not Really New
There are a few indigenous tribes around the world which are living proof that a high-saturated fat diet comes with low mortality from heart disease. For example, the Inuit Eskimos in the Arctic eat mostly whale meat and blubber, which makes their diet composed of 75% saturated fat (!), yet they hardly suffer from heart disease. Seems we need some regression when it comes to how we eat!