5 Reasons to Eat More Fat

NUTRITIOUSLY ROOTED

Fat can be a scary word for some. And sadly there are many people that still believe that dietary fat is what leads to excess body fat and poor health. While this might be true if you’re over consuming unhealthy fats, including plenty of healthy saturated + unsaturated fat in your diet is incredibly important for overall health [and even weight loss if that’s your goal].

Let’s first look at healthy fats vs. unhealthy fats:

Healthy – eat these foods

  • grass-fed butter or clarified butter [ghee]
  • unrefined coconut oil [my personal fave!]
  • avocado
  • raw nuts + seeds [and natural nut + seed butters]
  • olive oil
  • grass-fed meats

Unhealthy – eat less, limit, avoid

  • processed vegetable oils [canola, soybean, corn, etc.] – these are found in almost all processed foods, roasted nuts, chips, etc. Don’t forget to read your food labels!
  • trans fats [partially hydrogenated or hydrogenated oils]
  • margarine
  • conventionally raised or processed meats
  • fried foods
  • fast food

So now…my 5 reasons to eat more fat.

 

[1] Healthy fats keep you satisfied between meals.
Fats are digested slowly which helps to keep you satisfied longer. So pairing your snack or meal with some healthy fats can curb that hunger later in the day and prevent those unwanted mid-afternoon or late-night sugar cravings. Try one of the following:

  • add hummus or nut butter with fresh fruit or veggies
  • have a handful of raw nuts on hand for easy snacking
  • don’t be shy with adding grass-fed butter to cooked veggies, or using olive oil or coconut oil for cooking
  • add avocado to smoothies or guacamole as a veggie or healthy chip dip [try organic corn tortilla chips or even potato chips made with olive oil]
  • add raw nuts + seeds or an olive oil based salad dressing to salads

 

[2] Fat makes food taste great.
This is so true! Would you rather have plain steamed veggies with nothing on them [boring!], or how about some steamed broccoli with melted butter [choose high-quality grass-fed butter, please]. I know which one I’m going to choose. It’s not only butter that makes food taste great though. Try roasting veggies in olive oil, sautéing them in coconut oil or dipping them in guacamole.

 

[3] Healthy fats are essential for hormone production.
Many people don’t realize the importance of hormonal balance for overall health and even weight loss. Hormones essentially control + facilitate almost every function in the body. Without hormonal balance, things can start to go awry, and fast. Hormones are produced using healthy fats + cholesterol. Without these important dietary factors, the body doesn’t have the necessary building blocks to produce hormones, or produce them properly. So a diet that includes plenty of heathy fats along with other high quality whole foods is essential for hormonal health. So please, don’t fear fat.

Want to learn more about balancing hormone? Check out my free guide, Balancing Your Hormones Naturally Through Diet + Lifestyle Modification.

 

[4] Fat is necessary for fat-soluble vitamin absorption [vitamins A, D, E + K].
Did you know that certain vitamins [A, D, E + K] all require fat in order to be absorbed? These vitamins are known as “fat-soluble” vitamins meaning they require fat as a “carrier,” and without fat the body cannot absorb and utilize the benefits from these vitamins. Not absorbing adequate amounts of these vitamins can be a recipe for disaster. So I know you’re thinking that eating healthy is all about adding in those extra veggies, but just don’t forget to pair them with a little healthy fat, too.

 

[5] Healthy fats can help decrease inflammation. 
Yes, it’s true. Omega-3 fats are inflammation fighters. They are well known for their anti-inflammatory benefits throughout the entire body, including the brain. Most of us, whether we know it or not, suffer from chronic inflammation in one way or another [think joint pain, brain fog, bloating, fatigue, etc.]. And the most effective way to decrease inflammation is to make some dietary changes and start eating more healthy fats. There are a few types of omega-3 fats in our diet to be aware of:

  • alpha-linolenic acid [ALA] from walnuts, flax seeds and even some green leafy veggies
  • EPA + DHA from fatty fish like salmon, grass-fed beef + butter, or a high quality fish oil supplement

EPA and DHA are the super important omega-3s that are especially important for anti-inflammatory support and brain health. ALA must be converted by the body into usable EPA and DHA for the anti-inflammatory benefit, so while eating high quality forms of ALA from walnuts, flax and green veggies is beneficial, you’ll get more anti-inflammatroy benefit from eating straight sources of EPA and DHA from fish and fish oil.

Have I convinced you to start eating more fat? I hope so! A general rule of thumb that I like to follow is: make sure to include a source of healthy fats with each meal, that way you know you’re getting enough and reaping the benefits from one of nature’s greatest foods.

Don’t forget to check out my many recipes here.

live happily + healthfully,

Angela 
Certified Nutritionist
Foodie + Health Enthusiast

 

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Angela Freed

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