FATS, FATS, FATS! Does it make sense that we eat fats to shed fat? Well, it’s true. The only reason fat used to be ill-regarded was for marketing purposes. Of course we all ate it up, myself included. I used to stay away from fatty foods, yet I’d throw down artificial crap just to “save the fat”. No wonder I was getting anywhere.
Fats Have 6 Major Roles:
- Manufacture and regulate hormones
- Forms our brain and nervous system
- Transports fat soluble vitamins A,D,E,& K
- Provides energy
- Forms our cell membranes
- Supplies the body with 2 essential fatty acids: omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids
The term “healthy fats” are fats that have been shown to improve overall health with benefits related to blood cholesterol, blood vessels, inflammation and metabolism.
POP QUIZ: Is saturated fat a “healthy fat”?
ANSWER: Saturated fat found in cocoa butter and beef has been proven to lower LDL levels…this is good!
Saturated fats are harmful when saturated fat intake is high PLUS having a diet high in sugar & processed foods AND when saturated fat intake is out of balance with unsaturates.
We should strive to get all types of fat in our daily diets.
POP QUIZ: What is trans fat and is it harmful?
ANSWER: Trans fat comes from industrial fat processing, meaning it is created (through hydrogenation). YES it is harmful, being linked to many diseases and cancers, including heart disease. ABSOLUTELY ELIMINATE TRANS FATS IMMEDIATELY.
Here are my 5 Best Sources For A Flat Belly that will keep your fatty acid balanced throughout the day.
Try to add all 5 throughout the day when possible:
I love eggs and can have them anytime of the day. With the protein found in eggs, it is no wonder so many people turn to eggs as part of their daily food sources. See chart below taken from www.eggs.ca.
|Iron||Carries oxygen to the cells, helps prevent anemia – the iron in eggs is easily absorbed by the body|
|Vitamin A||Helps maintain healthy skin and eye tissue; assists in night vision|
|Vitamin D||Strengthens bones and teeth; may help protect against certain cancers and auto-immune diseases.|
|Vitamin E||An antioxidant that plays a role in maintaining good health and preventing disease|
|Vitamin B12||Helps protect against heart disease|
|Folate||Helps produce and maintain new cells; helps prevent a type of anemia, helps protect against serious birth defects if taken prior to pregnancy and during the first 3 months of pregnancy|
|Protein||Essential for building and repairing muscles, organs, skin, hair and other body tissues; needed to produce hormones, enzymes and antibodies; the protein in eggs is easily absorbed by the body|
|Selenium||Works with vitamin E to act as an antioxidant to help prevent the breakdown of body tissues|
|Lutein and zeaxanthin||Maintains good vision; may help reduce the risk of age-related eye diseases, such as cataracts and macular degeneration|
|Choline||Plays a strong role in brain development and function|
Right alongside with quinoa, avocado has to be up there with my most favorite foods. Loaded with vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin K, vitamin B6, vitamin C, folate, potassium and more, avocado proves to be a powerful supporter of cardiovascular health. This anti-inflammatory promotes blood sugar regulations, fights cancer and is a good source of fiber.
FUN FACT: Did you know that avocados have more usable protein than a piece of streak?
Beef and Salmon
Yes, I know…these are considered protein. But, I use them as a fat source and protein in ONE! I’ll give you one more to make up for these two (see 5 Best Protein Sources For A Flat Belly)
Mixed Nuts & Seeds
The protein content in nuts, along with every kind of fatty acids, making these delicious little wonders an absolute MUST HAVE fat source! Nuts and seeds also have an abundance of minerals and vitamins, including a healthy portion of vitamin E, thiamine, folate, selenium and magnesium.
FUN FACT: A nut is a hard-shelled fruit, having an opening that releases a seed (Wikipedia Foundation Inc.).
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)
- a monounsaturate
- antioxidant, loaded with vitamin E
- prevention against cancers
- balances omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids
- lowers LDL and total cholesterol
- lowers blood sugars and blood pressure.
Coconut oil- if you see RBD, leave it on the shelf. RBD stands for “refined, bleached, and deodorized”. It is also important to ensure you are not buying hydrogenated coconut oil that is loaded with trans fat and if you are in Australia, stay away from Copha, which is hydrogenated cococnut oil disquised in many packaged foods. Look for VIRGIN COCONUT OIL.
**If you are cooking with fats, use unrefined or virgin coconut oil and/or organic butter. These can both be used at high temperatures.