How to choose healthy fats: seven tips
Which fats are harmful and which are beneficial?
Let’s see what fats are good for the body. Fats are one of the key components of a healthy diet. Many people still mistakenly believe that fat is evil, because it is the most high-calorie, and reduce it in their diet. However, fats are different: harmful or beneficial. And some of them are vital for us.
For example, without omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, our existence is impossible, and fat-soluble vitamins will not be absorbed at all unless you eat fatty foods.
Can I use fat while losing weight?
In the past, the need to reduce fat intake for weight loss was based on the fact that fats contain about two times more calories per gram than carbohydrates or proteins. In fact, foods such as avocados, vegetable oil, nuts and seeds, oily wild fish, help the body absorb the accumulated fat. They improve appetite, allow you to feel full and satisfied after eating, and increase mood.
The use of healthy fats for weight loss is not only useful, but also a necessary measure. Healthy fats strengthen the immune and cardiovascular systems, improve metabolism and brain function, restore hormonal balance and reduce harmful inflammation in all body systems.
List of foods containing the most healthy fats
Gradually, while studying a controversial topic and pondering what foods contain healthy fats, I have developed a squeeze of recommendations for their correct choice:
1. Choose omega-3 fatty acids. Essential omega-3 fatty acids fight inflammation. The body is not able to independently produce them, so you need to get them from the diet. Good sources are wild salmon, walnuts, chia seeds. It is very important to properly store omega-3 sources so that they do not oxidize and do not lose their beneficial properties. Read more about this here.
Give preference to extra virgin olive oil. Oil refining or processing processes, such as, for example, extraction of oil with solvents, discoloration, deodorization (when the oil is odorless, distilling it with water vapor at temperatures above 230 degrees), hydrogenation (in which hydrogenated trans fats are widely used in cooking) make oil not only useless for health, but also often dangerous. Do not be afraid that olive oil is fat. The fact is that olive oil is basically monounsaturated fat, which is necessary for our health. It contains not harmful, but healthy fats.
2. Look for rich taste. “Any real oil must have a taste, a pronounced color and smell,” says Lisa Howard, author of The Big Book of Healthy Cooking Oils. The highly processed and “refined” oil has no taste, almost does not smell and has a transparent color.
3. Pay attention to the quality of animal fats. Butter made from milk from cows fed with natural feed. Ghee from which solid milk particles with lactose and casein are removed. All these are good sources of animal fat.
4. Look for variety. Olive oil, for example, will provide a healthy dose of oleocantal, an antioxidant with proven anti-inflammatory properties. But there are other options for vegetable oils that can be used instead of olive: sunflower, sesame, linseed. By adding chopped avocados to a salad, you can help your body absorb carotenoids from other foods in that salad and provide an extra dose of fiber and protein.
If you adhere to the advice to use healthy fats for weight loss, then you will surely prepare salads. Remember the recommendations extravirginonly. Only in extra virgin olive oil retains beneficial properties. A number of studies prove the ability of olive oil to resist certain types of cancer, prevent the development of diabetes, lower blood pressure, strengthen the immune system, improve skin condition and slow down the aging process. But above all, we value olive oil because it significantly reduces the risk of strokes and heart attacks, protecting our cardiovascular system from atherosclerosis and “bad” cholesterol. It’s all about the high content of oleic acid, polyphenols and the natural antioxidant vitamin E. Or cook on coconut.
5. Monitor the quality of the source of fat. If the oil is not stored properly, then it releases chemicals that cause oxidative stress in human cells and can provoke degenerative diseases. In addition, it is important to choose environmentally friendly fats: toxins are often concentrated in fats and oils.
6. Avoid high temperatures while cooking. If the oil is heated to a temperature at which it begins to smoke, free radicals and other toxic compounds are formed in it.