5 Biggest Misconceptions About Eating Fat
Eating Fat is Bad For You
Fats are like carbs, in that there are low quality and high-quality ones. Just like low-quality carbs, the low-quality fats, such as saturated fats, which are commonly found in processed foods, aren’t good for your health. However, foods that contain good fats, such as walnuts, salmon and flax seeds are actually good for you. It is the fats that are found in foods, such as partially-hydrogenated vegetable oils, butter and beef fats that aren’t so good for your health.
All Fats Are the Same
Unfortunately, all fats are generally thought to be the same, but there are actually several types of fat and they are all different. For example, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats are readily burned by your body and they are heart healthy, but trans fats and saturated fats are generally stored more easily as body fat. The largest amounts of saturated fats can usually be found in butter, beef fats and palm kernel oil, as well as chicken and pork fats. Trans fats can primarily be found in partially hydrogenated-vegetable oils that are commonly used in processed foods.
Eating Any Type/Amount of Fat Causes Weight Gain
Eating fat, especially high-quality fats, like anything else you consume in large quantities, will probably cause weight gain. However, it is true that a little fat goes a long way, so if you are mindful of your fat intake, you shouldn’t have any noticeable weight gain. In order to prevent weight gain, it is important that you consume fat in amounts that fall within the context of your daily calorie needs. For example, it is recommended that you consume less than 10 percent of your daily calories from saturated fats and you should try to get include about 20 percent of daily calories from healthy fats.
Eating High in Fat Raises Cholesterol
While it is true that saturated fats have been linked to a rise in cholesterol, other fats, such as poly-unsaturated fatty acids, which is found in soybeans, sesame seeds, salmon, sunflowers, pumpkin seeds, walnuts and tuna, have been shown to significantly decrease cholesterol levels.
Eating Fat Has No Purpose
This is false! Your body actually needs adequate amounts of dietary fat in order to support normal body and brain functions. Your body also requires fats for the production of hormones, regulation of your body temperature and cell signaling. Fats are also essential for supporting healthy skin, hair and nails.
It is understandable how many people get confused about fats, especially since fats were previously thought to be the primary cause of obesity and overall general health. However, recent studies and research has shown that consuming “good” fats is an important factor of a healthy diet. As long as you eat the fats that are beneficial for your health and limit the amount of “bad” fats, you shouldn’t be concerned about weight gain and your body will function as it should.