There are a lot of misconceptions that people have about the fat they eat. Fat has gotten a pretty bad reputation, when in fact it’s one of the three most important nutrients for your body. Without fat, your body would cease to function.
Here are a few myths about fat, as well as the truths behind the myths:
Myth: Eating less fat is good.
The truth is that cutting back on overall fat consumption is the key to better health. However, just reducing the amount of fat you eat isn’t the most important thing, but reducing the BAD trans and saturated fats is what matters most. You should try to eat more of the health unsaturated fats, all the while limiting the bad fats. That’s the key to eating fat the healthy way.
Myth: All fats are bad.
Once again, this is a broad statement that is actually incorrect. Trans fats are bad for your health, but a bit of saturated fat is not bad as long as you don’t consume too much. Unsaturated fats are actually going to improve the health of your heart, so it’s in your best interests to eat MORE of these healthy plant-based fats. Omega-3 fatty acids are one of the best types of fats, and you should eat as much of them as you can in order to improve the health of your brain and heart.
Myth: A low-fat diet is the key to weight loss.
Wrong! Did you know that cutting fat out of your diet will actually cause your body to hang on to weight instead of getting rid of it? Your body needs fat in order to lose weight, so you need to eat a healthy amount of fat. Stick with no more than 25% fat in your diet, but cut calories instead of just limiting fat. That’s the best way to lose weight, and the ONLY way that you’ll drop those pounds the healthy way.
Myth: “Fat free” is healthier.
Just because a product doesn’t contain fat, that doesn’t mean it’s healthy. Most of the “fat free” products you see on the shelf are made with other harmful chemicals and additives, as the manufacturers still have to make the products delicious even without the fat. You’ll find that “fat free” products tend to have far more sugar, which is far worse for your health!
Myth: Body fat is all the same.
Once again, wrong! Some body fat is actually necessary, while other types of body fat–particularly the stuff stored around your waist and hips–will be unhealthy. Most of the fat stored in your belly is found deep in the tissues, near the organs. This type of fat can lead to diabetes, heart problems, digestive issues, and more. It’s far worse than fat around your arms and legs.
Good vs. Bad Fats
What are the good fats, the ones you should be eating more of? Basically, any fat that comes from a plant, seed, or nut is healthy. These fats are called unsaturated fats, and they are the ones that you want to eat more of. Eating more coconuts, avocadoes, and olives is a good way to get these healthy fats, which will improve the health of your heart.
One of the few exceptions to that rule is fish, which is loaded with Omega-3 fatty acids. These fatty acids are key to a healthy body.
Saturated fat should be limited, and you should definitely try to cut out trans fats as much as possible. Both of these fats can do long-term damage to your body, and they’re the ones to steer clear of.