The good fats are the unsaturated fats that have a nutritional benefit. Some of them are essential fatty acids or EFAs. Dietary fats are a long, complicated story; that is, their chemical composition and their impact on our health and weight. To make it simple for you do this:
Stick to eating a diet primarily made up of plant foods that contain unsaturated and even essential fatty acids, the plant fats. If you have diabetes you are better off to be a vegetarian. * If you eat some meat make sure that it it comes from grass fed animals, thus containing some of the EFAs and less of the saturated fats that are in domesticated animal foods.
Eat the good fats in foods that are in what are called omega 3 sources. These are the foods that burn fat
and make us much more healthy! All fats, whether they are the
saturated fats in meats or the unsaturated fats in plants, all oils,
butters and even mayonnaise are low glycemic. They slow down digestion
and make us feel fuller longer. Minimize, or if you need a diabetic diet plan, eliminate the saturated fats.
The good fats, some of which are essential fatty acids or the omega
3s, are just that - the essential ones for our health and well being.
These are the unsaturated fats from plant foods and fish. The king
of the fat burning omega 3 oils is flaxseed oil. The king of the fat
burning raw nuts is the walnut. The best source of EFAs (essential fatty acids) in fish is salmon.
Most people eating the typical American diet are seriously deficient in some of the omega 3 fatty acids. This is a real problem for your health because they prevent obesity, minimize circulatory disorders, help prevent cancer, heart disease, arthritis, immune deficiency diseases, kidney disease, depression, ulcerative colitis, asthma, hives, psoriasis, enlarged prostate and migraines.
Scientists now know you cannot lose weight by eliminating ALL dietary fats. In fact, scientists have established that the good fats are in foods that burn fat!
What are the good fats? Wild fish are by far the richest source of
EPA/DHA omega 3s but another supreme source of omega 3s is
alpha-linolenic acid which is found in the oils of certain plants flax,
hemp seed, chia seeds, canola, soybean, walnuts and dark leafy greens. At least 1/3 of our total fat intake should be these EFA foods.
An Australian study done at the University of S. Australia, Adelaide, reports many ways in which marine foods in particular assist in fat loss. They secrete a hormone that decreases appetite and promotes the burning of body fat. They enhance blood sugar control and help the body prevent storage of food as body fat. Be sure that you eat wild fish and not the farm raised.
All the foods below contain unsaturated fats.
|nuts||wild fish||flax seed meal||all seeds|
We do need some saturated fats, the omega 6s which are below.
These are also good fats as long as they are the real thing...real
butter, unrefined oils. Make sure the foods above are of high
quality. Look for peanut oil that is made by a company that makes
unrefined oils and then read the label carefully.
Eggs should be from free range chickens and then they will contain essential fatty acids and be highly nutritious. One third of the fats in eggs from chickens that have been allowed to range free are EFAs. Meat that is from animals that have been grass fed will not be too fatty and will not contain antibiotics or hormones. Don't skimp on the quality of animal foods. This is possible because you don't need to eat a lot of meat. Plant foods are cheap compared to animal foods.
People who consume a diet heavy in animal foods often have too much body fat, high cholesterol and sometimes heart disease. Eliminate refined oils from any source and cut down significantly on how much red meat you eat.
It has been reported that only a very small percentage of French people are overweight yet the French eat lots of cheese and butter. But they eat smaller portions than we do and they don't consume as much red meat. If you eat less meat and smaller portions then you can enjoy cheeses and eggs.
Commercial oil processing is a nasty business apparently, a bit like sausage making. The only oils not treated to harmful processing methods that renders them nutrient deficient and often damaging, are virgin olive oils and some unrefined oils. Udo's oils (available in natural foods stores) were the result of a pioneering technology that protects them from light and heat. They are balanced for EFAs and are of excellent quality. If the oil has color and smells like it's seed source, then it is truly unrefined.
Monounsaturated oils are unsaturated fats and they are the best cooking oils for those of us who want to maintain fat loss. Virgin olive oil is the highest in monounsaturated fats which protects against cardiovascular disease and supports healthy brain function. Olive oil is an essential part of the Mediterranean diet. In these cultures people have a low incidence of heart disease and cancer.
You would do well to use virgin olive oil for your cooking and for
your salad dressings as well. It has great flavor! Other oils you can use for cooking are unrefined peanut or sesame oils. Read the labels carefully. Are they packaged in dark colored bottles, brown, black or green?
All oils contain all three types of fats (saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat) but in varying percentages. More delicate plant oils, omega 3 oils like flaxseed oil and hemp seed oil do not stand up well to heat and should never be used for cooking.
Flaxseed is the richest source of alpha-lenolenic acid (LNA.)
Flaxseed oil is a wonderful omega 3 oil and can be used in a
salad dressing or you can put flaxseed meal on your cereal. It can also be used therapeutically.
There are many poor quality vegetable oils on the market, especially the refined polyunsaturated ones that are highly processed with heat. As polyunsaturated oils oxidize and become rancid they create free radicals in the body and hasten aging and weaken the immune system.
Some people mistakenly gave up butter which is high in saturated fat and changed to highly refined hydrogenated vegetable oils like margarine or shortening. When it comes to good fats vs. bad fats it's these highly refined oils that are the worst. These are the true "bad fats." Oils are processed under pressure with hydrogen gas at high temperatures. Partial hydrogenation results in trans-fatty acids that elevate cholesterol and are harmful in that they create an immune damaging synthetic fat. Unfortunately, sometimes these margarines are found in health food stores!
You need to eat a variety of plant foods and fish to get enough essential fatty acids. You will "cover all the bases" if you eat flaxseed meal, walnuts, soybeans, sesame seeds or oil or hemp seed oil and some fish. Eat flaxseed meal on your cereal or yogurt. Try a handful of raw nuts, especially walnuts, with a glass of milk or unsweetened soymilk or almond milk and an apple or whatever fruit is in season for a perfect low glycemic snack. Have salmon, mackerel, rainbow trout, sardines or eel as often as you can but at least once a week.
EFAs are just that - essential for your health and vitality. There are many degenerative diseases that may occur if you do not get enough of the good fats. Cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, skin afflictions, dry skin, premenstrual syndrome, behavioral problems, poor wound healing, glandular atrophy, weakened immune functions and sterility are more of these.
Saturated fats like those in pastries or lunch meats tend to make us more hungry. Add some sliced avocado to a salad instead or a handful of nuts to a smoothie or have an almond milk shake with frozen blueberries. We need the good fats to transport the fat, soluable vitamins A,D, E and K. They provide us with energy too. Work at getting more of the good fats into your daily eating plan and you will be on your way to losing body fat and gaining excellent health!
For more on the interesting subject of good and bad fats read the excellent reference below which was a source for much of this information.
* Fats That Heal Fats That Kill by Udo Erasmus, published by Alive Books, 1986.
For more articles on how to keep your blood sugar low with your diet read the articles below!
These are the foods that you need to build your menus around.
What's the best source of calcium?
Create meals around the high fiber, nutrient dense foods.
Pasta may be carbohydrate dense but it is low glycemic!
will crave whole grains once you've changed your eating habits. Sprouted grains are the best.
Start your day the low glycemic way and you'll have good energy all day.
These foods do NOT raise your blood sugar.
Here are the foods with the essential fatty acids to put in your salads for good nutrition and also to help you burn fat.
You do not have to give up sweets!
Freedom from food addictions means living at your ideal weight.
This common food burns fat like crazy!
This one will give you an added boost.
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