Paleo Diet Promotes Balance of Fat, especially Omega 3’s
You Should Question Dietary Recommendations about Fat
Dietary recommendations are among the most ironic pieces of advice that are probably given. You may wonder what I mean by this. Let’s use eggs as an example. We ate eggs for generations. Then we were told not to eat eggs because they contain cholesterol and as we all know, cholesterol is the root of all healthcare evils (said tongue-in-cheek of course). In contrast we are now seeing that eggs have no significant effect on blood cholesterol levels. The vast discrepancy in the information that we here can leave one wondering what to trust for dietary advice.
This same logic can be taken one step further when you consider fat in the diet. Again, for numerous years no one thought about fat in the diet. We just ate what was available to use and it seemed to work itself out. However, science came along and we started making correlations between saturated fats and heart disease. As the adage goes, if a little is good, more is better. This did not exactly hold true however. When many started taking the fat out of their diet for fear of increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease, they did not realize that this would be replaced by excess carbohydrates. Ironically, this reduction in fat and increase of carbohydrates still increased cardiovascular risk, just in a different way.
The Forgotten Truth about Fats
The moral of the story is that our body needs fat and contrary to some outdated thoughts about fat it is not bad for us. Fat consumption needs to be in a balanced ratio as it is found in nature. But many of us are still fat phobic when in reality we should not be. Fat provides several components that are essential to our normal function. Interestingly, we have been indoctrinated to avoid cholesterol and to try to get our cholesterol levels lower and lower. This is detrimental in many ways however and impairs several functions. Sources of saturated animal fat provide cholesterol. And while many think that saturated fats are bad, the truth is that they are only problematic when consumed in excess as compared to unsaturated fats. To further this point, when we consume grass fed or free range sources of meat, we are actually consuming a balanced ratio of fats. You don’t have to figure out the nuances of the diet and wonder if you are eating the right ratio. You just have to eat the right food and the details will be taken care of for you.
Additional benefits to eating fats in your diet include adequate consumption of fat soluble vitamins, antioxidants and essential fatty acids. Dietary fat is an excellent source of the fat soluble nutrients vitamin A, D, E, and K. While all of these are of vital importance, vitamin D has gotten the spot light more recently. This simple nutrient alone supports adequate immune function, increases uptake of calcium, aids in glucose control, acts as a hormone and improves cardiovascular and bone health. Additionally from ideal sources of dietary fat, we derive essential fatty acids. Often times these are identified as omega 3’s. Omega 3’s are vital to overall health and most Americans are extremely deficient. Among the numerous benefits that omega 3’s offer, they promote adequate brain function, reduction of inflammation and subsequently advanced aging, improved skin integrity, reduction of cardiovascular disease and cancer and lowering of triglycerides.
How Modern Food Preparation is Putting you at Risk
What we should be concerned about are consuming damaged and harmful fats. Fats that are overcooked have become rancid and actually promote inflammation in our body rather than preventing it. This is best illustrated by smoking rising from your oils and signals that you have crossed the smoke point of your oil. Additionally, you should avoid fats that are manipulated. These will be labeled as hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated. The good news is that if most of the food that you consume does not come with a label, you are not likely to be eating these damaged fats.
The Solution to Keeping Your Fats Balanced
The solution to keeping your fats balanced is eating a Paleo Diet. The Paleo Diet is the foolproof solution to getting the right fats in the right amounts in your diet. When you consume sufficient quantities of plants, fats and proteins in the diet, you will find that you are not likely to over-consume the potentially health robbing fats in the diet, but rather you will be ingesting those fats that promote health and wellness. Nuts, seeds, and avocados as are found in the Paleo Diet are among a few of the foods that provide not only fat, but fat that helps improve your overall metabolic function and reduces inflammation.