Many people have a poor understanding of fats. They either banish them from their diets completely thinking fats will make them fat or they are completely oblivious to the difference between good and bad fats. Others are increasing their awareness, great I say. However, regular consumption of good fats can still be a hit and miss. First, let’s have a look at why fat is so critical to our health?
Fat is a very essential component of our diet as are proteins & carbohydrates just to name a few. Believe it or not, we cannot survive without fat. It’s main role in the body is for protection and insulation. It lines our vital organs and protects them in times of need such as during serious illness or accident. It keeps us warm. It provides us with energy, not just to carry out our daily duties but also energy for vital functions our bodies carry out on the inside that we are unaware of such as processing our food, manufacturing new cells, hair, skin, nails, enzymes, production of hormones…and lots more.
Essential fatty acids (such as omega 3, 6 & 9 are high in fish & shellfish especially mackerel, trout, herring, Sardines, tuna and salmon are all high in two kinds of valuable omega three fatty acids EPA and DHA. Many people have a deficiency of omega three fatty acids in their cells, this may explain the high incidence of several common modern ailments, including cardiovascular disease, stiff joints, poor blood circulation and unhealthy skin. Ingesting good fats has been shown to act as a gradual anti-inflammatory and decrease pain in joints, although it can take several months before there is any noticeable difference. Fish oil is also believed to improve the circulation of blood to fingers and legs. It is recommended you eat fish two to three times weekly. Use in supplement form daily if you do not eat fish.
Vitamins A, D, E, K are fat-soluble. They NEED fat in the diet so they can be digested, absorbed and transported around for use. Walnuts, brazil nuts, cashew nuts are good choices, while sunflower, pumpkin, flax seeds and chia seeds are all great high omega seeds. One tablespoon daily is sufficient. Avocadoes are another amazing source of good fats, they can be blended and added to your juice, added to salad, eaten as they are, the perfect snack! Or used as dips/spreads. I recommend at least 3-4 per week if not every day. This week increase god fats and cut out all baked goods and fried foods. See you next week for part 2.