What is the beef with fat? It has been demonized in our culture as synonymous with “being fat.” If you don’t want to be overweight and obese then the answer is to eat a low-fat diet high in grains, starches, and fruit right? ERRR wrong. The human body burns food for fuel. Proteins act basically as body builders. They help build the physical structures to your body but they do not provide much fuel. Fat and carbohydrates are the primary fuel sources. Which your body prefers depends primarily on your genetics, age, and location. Some people use a mixture of the two. Good fats are not the evil weight gaining things to stay away from that we have been told they are.
Now of course; stay away from BAD fats. These are man-made or man-altered products that are not natural at all. These would include things like pasteurized dairy products, high-heated vegetable oils, fried foods, roasted nuts, greasy burgers/fries, pizzas, etc. These will help clog up your liver and system in general.
I am talking about the GOOD fats today. This doesn’t matter if you are a vegetarian or a carnivore. Here are some options for both categories. Personally, i feel best with some of both depending on how I am feeling.
VEGETABLE FATS: Avocados, Raw soaked nuts and seeds, Olives/cold pressed olive oil, Coconuts/cold pressed coconut oil.
ANIMAL FATS: egg yolks (preferably free range and raw or lightly cooked), fatty fish (sardines, salmon), cod liver oil, bone marrow, bone broth (chicken stock, beef stock), Lightly cooked meats. Raw dairy (kefir, butter, milk, cream) goes here if it is a food that works well with you. Some swear by it. Others swear against it. Most cultures have used animal fats for thousands of years.
When it comes to fats, cooking seems to be the enemy here. Don’t fry your food. Try to eat your fats as lightly cooked as safe and possible. Think things like crock-pots, steamers, etc, instead of frying pans.
So these good quality foods will help you stay satisfied and not so hungry. Our bodies need some high-quality fat to function correctly. In general, living in colder climates seems to require more fat. Listen to your own body and let it guide you as to what it wants. As for the carbs, I don’t see anything wrong with them either. The problem is that carbs appear to be the easiest macronutrient to overindulge in. Potatoes, pasta, bread, etc. Carbohydrates are a valid fuel source for the body and humans have been eating them for a long time. The problem is OVEREATING them. It’s like putting too much fuel into the gas tank. There is leftovers for most people. This translates to excess weight and a clogging up of the system. Exercise will help this a little bit but the real answer is to stop eating so much of the heavy starches. Focus on fresh fruits and vegetables. Cut back on the pastas, cereals, granolas, breads, potatoes, etc. There is nothing wrong with some potatoes every now and then for most people but mix in some good broccoli or other green veggie and some healthy fat to balance it out. So please, don’t have a beef with fat. It is not the enemy. Eat a well-balanced diet that feels right to you. I believe that if you are eating mainly whole foods, then your body will tell you what it does and doesn’t want. Eat some mono-meals (1 food at a time) here and there to really get a feel for how that food sits with you. Above all, listen to your body and don’t be afraid of any food that nature has made and people have been eating for a very long time.