Good Fats, Bad Fats, Which Fats?
The Good, The Bad and The Ugly!
“It is simply a matter of including natural highly unsaturated fats in your food intake.”
Dr Johanna Budwig
What is Fat?
All fats consist of fatty acids. Fats are classified, depending on their chemical structure, as saturated, monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fats.
Fat may be either solid or liquid at room temperature. Vegetable oils are usually liquid at room temperature while animal fats are usually solid at room temperature.
We must identify which fat is harmful and which one is healthy. Indeed certain fats are not only healthy but essential to our body proper functioning.
I am aware that we are repeatedly told by the media, especially partial info from ads and commercials, that eating fats will result in weight gain and heart diseases.
I AM AFRAID WE ARE MISINFORMED.
We are not told the whole story.
We are not told that our body needs healthy fats for proper functioning.
We are not told the difference between good fats and bad fats.
Someone forgot to tell us about the essential omega oils, and that most people, especially overweight people, are omega oils deficient.
We are not told that omega oils can in fact protect us from heart diseases and other chronic diseases. Essential fatty acids are protective and therapeutic.
Numerous studies have been published on the goodness of Omega-3 fatty acid, especially for their beneficial effects in heart diseases and cancer.
Actually most of the fat is produced by the liver.
If you do not eat enough fat, the liver will produce the needed cholesterol.
Unfortunately the body is not able to manufacture essential fatty acids. Those have to be present in our foods.
The Ugly Guys!
Trans fatty acids commonly referred as transfats are one of the worst enemy to our health.
Most transfats are man created, by partially hydrogenating plant oils or animal fats. This is a chemical process that was invented to increase products shelf life.
Dr Johanna Budwig, considered the foremost authority on fats and healings, has written a very interesting book called: “Flax oil as a true aid against arthritis, heart infarction, cancer and other diseases.”
In this book she explains that our body needs highly unsaturated fats. She further explains that transfats have lost their unsaturated qualities and as a result they cannot be digested by the body.
Transfats are solid and difficult to digest.
The body does not recognize these fats as natural fats.
Fats that cannot be digested, build up in the arteries. It is known as an abnormality in the metabolism of fats.
The most harmful fats are transfats found in margarine and processed food with hydrogenated oils. Transfats are processed fats that have been chemically transformed.
What is harmful is not fat itself, but the oxidation of fat.
Oxidation of fat is the result of fat exposure to oxygen, or fat heating.
At high temperatures, like boiling temperature, oils oxidize rapidly and have a chemical shift to transfats which are harmful to our body.
The Good Guys!!!
There are good fats, healing fats such as olive oil, flaxseeds oil, oils found in nuts and seeds, and the omega oils.
Omega 3 fatty acids are found in fish such as salmon, herring, sardines, tuna, as well as in flaxseeds, walnut and pumpkin seeds.
Omega 6 fatty acids are found in nuts and seeds, evening primrose and borage oils.
The omega fats tend to normalize cholesterol levels.
Indeed Not all fats are bad.
Flax seed oil is unique because it contains both Omega-3 and Omega-6 essential fatty acids.
What is important is the kind of fat we eat.
Natural fats like butter and animal fats are more easily digested than transfats.
Natural fats also contain antioxidants and vitamins which are vital nutrients for the various functions of our body.
Meat and eggs are both a rich source of complete proteins as well as a source of natural fats, some important vitamins and other nutrients.
The healthiest oils are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated cold vegetable oils. (Heating oils changes their chemical structure).
Healthy oils are unprocessed oils, cold pressed, and produced from plants, seeds or fruit.
Healthy oils, such as olive oil and flax seeds oil, contain vitamin A and vitamin E which protects the oil from oxidation and rancidity.
Another good source of healthy fats can be found in raw nuts and seeds. These should be eaten in moderation because of their high fat content.
Good fats can also be found in avocados and olives.
It is also found in goat's milk and dairy products derived from it, such as cheeses and butter.
Our body needs fats
Fat digestion releases a hormone that signals to our brain that we have eaten enough. If we do not eat enough fat, we do not feel satisfied by our food because the satiety hormone is not released.
Of course it is not recommending to eat large amounts of fat or to eat more than your body requires; otherwise you will gain weight.
But you definitely should include, in every meal, a moderate amount of the healthy fats, especially the essential fats that will help your metabolism burn the extra weight more efficiently.