Is Fat Our Enemy

POPULATION AS A WHOLE FOR DECADES WE'VE BEEN TOLD TO CURB OUR FAT INTAKE IF WE WANT TO LOSE WEIGHT, YET OUR POPULATION AS A WHOLE IS HEAVIER THAN EVER. Arabic العربية The supermarkets are packed with premium-priced low fat foods, and chances are you check the fat content before popping something into your basket. Gram for gram, fat is higher in calories than protein or carbohydrates; but that's only half the story. Many so-called 'diet foods' have simply replaced the fat with refined carbohydrates and sugar, which are known to have a deleterious effect on weight, and health in general. Fat does not trigger the activation of insulin that can lead to fat storage; eating refined carbohydrates does. Fat also makes you feel satiated, while refined carbs exacerbate cravings. Very low fat diets are in fact harmful. Fat is essential to female wellbeing because it's used to build hormones, and compounds called prostaglandins that protect against inflammation. Dietary fat is needed to absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K, and is vital for brain function, mood and skin health. WHICH FATS ARE BEST? Avoid fat-laden processed foods and stick to natural sources. Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, found in oily fish, protect the heart and support child development during pregnancy.Found in: Monounsaturated fat from nuts, olive oil and avocado can lower cholesterol levels, and support blood sugar control. The jury is still out on whether saturated fats - found in red meat and dairy – are harmful. OILY FISH ABOUT THE AUTHOR Lisa Monteith is a qualified nutritional therapist and has over 20 years of experience in food and fitness writing. With a particular interest in dietary approaches to optimum health and sports performance, she will leave no stone unturned in the pursuit of the healthiest food and newest weight loss research.