Every time you look into the mirror, you might be wondering why people out there have a nice summer body with full confidence while you are still struggling with your recent-up-sized t-shirt. You might even be wondering, are you going to be like them one day? Is there any chance for you to change? Of course, there is. However, the summer body doesn’t come with ease.
Many work their butt off to attain their dream body. But, the important thing is, you are healthy from the inside out. When I say fat burn, the first thing that comes in your mind is exercise. Yes, of course, you need to exercise to have a nice summer body. But, do you know that our eating habits affect our body the most? Have you ever heard that weight loss is 80% diet, 20% exercise? I beg to differ.
Diet can actually make up as much as 90-99% of your weight loss journey. The MAIN reason why you’re fat is because of your lifestyle! Having an unhealthy lifestyle not only slows down your metabolism but also brings you chronic diseases. With a slow metabolic system, you can even gain weight by only drinking water! This is also the reason why some people slim down at a very slow rate but gain all the weight back in one night.
Slimming down is good, but slimming down healthily is the key point here. We want you to look into your health first instead of focusing on all the crazy diet plans and exercise regimes.
So, what exactly is fat? Fat is made up of building blocks called fatty acids and these are classified as saturated, monounsaturated, or polyunsaturated depending on their chemical structure. Fat is essential to human life, we all need fat in our diets. For years, nutritionists and doctors have preached that a low-fat diet is a key to losing weight and preventing health problems.
However, not all fat is the same. Our body requires small amounts of ‘good fat’ to function and help prevent disease. However, most of the ‘modern’ food contains a lot more fat than the body needs. Too much fat, especially too much of the wrong type of fat could be detrimental to your health causing serious health problems such as higher blood pressure and cholesterol levels, obesity, which in turn leads to a greater risk of heart disease.
So, it is significant to know what types of fat should you be cutting back on.
Good Fats VS Bad Fats
We are constantly being told that “fats are bad”, and many will spend lots of time and money to completely rid their diet of fat. The truth is, we need fats. Fats help in nerve transmission, nutrient absorption, maintaining cell membrane integrity, etc. Simply said, fat is actually necessary for you to lose weight. However, when consumed in excess amounts, it can increase your risk for a number of health threats. The key is to replace bad fats with good fats in your diet.
1. Good Fats
Good fat is sometimes called unsaturated fat. The types of potentially helpful dietary fats are mostly unsaturated. Unsaturated fat comes in two forms: monounsaturated and polyunsaturated.
2. Monounsaturated Fats
This is a type of fat is found in a variety of food and oils. You can get it from:
Nuts – walnuts and pistachios including almonds, peanuts, cashews, and macadamia nuts
Oils – avocado, canola, and olive oils
The most well-documented benefit of consuming monounsaturated fats is the potential for keeping your heart healthy. It improves blood cholesterol levels, which can decrease your risk of heart disease. Research also shows that these fatty acids may benefit insulin levels and blood sugar control, which can be especially helpful if you have type-2 diabetes.
Not just that, studies have also found that switching to monounsaturated fat from diets rich with trans fats and polyunsaturated fats results in significant weight loss. Yes, both consume the same amount of fats in their diet, but end up with different results!
The key here is the type of fats you’re consuming on a daily basis.
3. Polyunsaturated Fats
There are two types of polyunsaturated fats: omega-3 and omega-6. These are also known as essential fatty acids. Our body can’t produce essential fatty acids on its own, so we need to get them from food.
Omega- 3 – is a type of polyunsaturated fat you get from foods such as:
Tuna, salmon, and mackerel
Green leafy vegetables
Walnuts, other nuts, and flaxseed
Babies can also get omega-3 from breastmilk. It promotes brain health during pregnancy and early life. Omega-3 helps a baby’s brain and eye development in the womb and during the first six months of life. It has a great impact on children’s learning and behavior. As for adults, omega-3 can be good for rheumatoid arthritis, pain relief, morning stiffness, and inflammation. It can also protect adults from heart disease.
Omega-6 – is a type of polyunsaturated fat you get from foods such as:
Evening primrose oil
Omega 6 plays an important role in cell growth and is thus essential for brain and muscle development. The omega-6 arachidonic acid (AA) is for this very reason added to most infant formulas. Both brain development and muscle development are critical for infants.
The growth benefits of omega 6 also explain the great interest that bodybuilders and top athletes have in omega 6 consumption. Omega-6, particularly gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), is linked to increased bone density and reduced bone loss and it helps to promote hair growth and supports skin health. Omega-6 has an anti-inflammatory effect on our skin, soothing irritated skin.
There are two main types of potentially harmful dietary fats: Saturated fat and Trans fat
Saturated fats are fats you get from foods such as:
Animal products such as meat fat
Full-fat dairy products such as butter and cream
Palm and coconut oil in processed food such as biscuits and chips
Saturated fats have no known health benefits. A high intake of disadvantageous saturated and trans fats can lead to elevated low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, cholesterol levels, which may increase your risk of developing heart disease. Saturated fats may also contribute to obesity, diabetes, and cancer.
Trans fats are sometimes used in the following:
Commercially-made cakes and biscuits
Snack food like chips
Trans fats can increase harmful low-density-lipoprotein cholesterol while decreasing good high-density-lipoprotein cholesterol. In turn, this can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease. Furthermore, it has been associated with the development of type-2 diabetes.
I hope you found this information to be helpful. Please feel free to leave a comment and let me know what you liked about it.
To your health!