Ladies it’s time to talk about fat – something some of us actually fear. Eating fat has got a rather bad reputation and some will try to avoid it.. BUT there is no need to be afraid of fats! In fact, it is super important and we couldn’t live without it. In this blog post I will tell you all about the importance of eating good fats for fitness fanatics and which fats you can choose best!
Let’s talk some fatty facts first
Fat contains more calories per gram than carbs and protein, which is a reason for some to go for a low-fat diet. However, the importance of eating good fats all starts with our bodies needing fat for many essential body functions and it provides fuel to get us going! And did you know our brain consists for over 60% of fats? Through fats we consume fat soluble vitamins and we need it for the production of hormones – nothing to be scared of right? Besides, recent research suggest that..
..(excessive) consumption of refined carbs may contribute to health issues, more than (just) fat.
It’s all about creating a good balance with your food intake in general! So instead of going for a low-fat diet, it is best to keep your macros in a right ratio. An optimal diet contains of healthy food options with good fats, enough protein and complex carbs. The recommendation is to consumer approx. 30-40% of daily energy from fats, in case of overweight, it should be limited to 20-35%. Again, also when it comes to the importance of eating good fats: it’s all about the balance. Calories aren’t bad, you just needs to make sure to stay in balance with the calorie intake and expenditure.
GOOD fats vs BAD fats
For the importance of eating good fats, I always make sure to have plenty of good fats in my daily food intake. As with anything, when it comes to fats, we should vary plenty. There is the difference between unsaturated and saturated fats.
Unsaturated fats are mostly found in plant products and seen as the most healthy, as they help to reduce cholesterol levels, when replacing saturated fats. It is found in food like avocados, nuts, several oils, fat fish, but also margarine. Now you might be thinking: margarine? Really? Yes really. Margarines are made with plant-based oils (you can try it at home!) and, therefore, most margarines you can buy in the supermarket contain (at least one of) the essential fatty acids omega 3 or 6. On top of that they are a source of fat soluble vitamins (A, D and sometimes E). Please note: butter is different from margarine 😉 Did you know? Most of the Becel margarines your can find in the supermarket are fully plant based! Click here to see my food diary and how I’m adding Becel margarine to my daily food intake.
Saturated fats in diets come mostly from animal products and should be consumed less, because we don’t need it. Instead, we can better obtain our fat intake from products rich in unsaturated fats. They bring the same amount of calories to the diet, but these types of fats we actually need to stay healthy. Meat and dairy butter contain high levels of saturated fat, but coconut oil as well! Did you know? Then there is something called trans-fat, which also has adverse health effects. This, in general, can be found in cookies, cakes, fried food, etc. which is one of the good reasons to avoid that kind of food as much as possible. Thankfully, the amount of trans fats in our food has decreased rapidly over past years. Our consumption is well below the advices 1% from our daily energy intake. it’s one of the reasons I prefer homemade and fresh food for which I like to use different oils for baking. Different types of oils and Becel variations are favs, and I try to limit my use of coconut oil for the reason I have mentioned above.
Now you know that the consumption of fat doesn’t make you unhealthy, but it is important to choose wisely and go for variation. This will create a lower chance of health issues and a higher chance of happiness! Good fat is essential for a wholesome diet. We need it, just not too much and from plenty of different sources. Prepare it, eat it, love it!
*This blog post was made in collaboration with Becel, but has had no effect on my opinion.
Diet-friendly low-carb quarkbread with cranberries