Fat in Foods is Fat on You
Many diets rely on restricting the amount of food you eat. This can work only for so long. Soon, the natural desire for food brings weight back up to where you started – often beyond – because the diet has caused a slowing of the metabolism, making every calorie harder to burn off. Of course, those who really are stuffing themselves do need to cut back, but the vast majority of overweight people will lose weight by simply changing food choices.
We have to always remember that it is not how much you eat; it’s what you eat that causes the overweight problem in us.
It is Not How Much You Eat, It’s What You Eat
An average American consumes nearly half his calories about 40 percent, as fat. For a person eating 2,000 calories per day that is 800 calories each day just from fats and oils in our foods. Think about animal fat. Animal fat was the calories storage area of the animal it came from. So when you eat animal fat, you are actually eating all those stored calories. Fat in foods finds its way very easily into our body fat. Little or no conversion is needed in the body before the fat we eat is added to the fat tissues of the body. So don’t eat someone else’s fat. It will put fat on you.
Let’s take an example: Imagine that we’re making tacos. We have two recipes for taco filling, one made with ground beef, which is a high-fat food and has absolutely no vital nutrition, and the other from beans, which are very low in fat but high in nutrition rich. Three ounces of ground beef contains about 225 calories, but the same amount of beans has only about 80 calories. The difference is not just the low fat content of beans but its nutritional value.
You have probably been told that lean beef, chicken and fish are low in fat foods. This is poor advice, as you know if you have tried to lose weight by eating them. These foods are low in fat only in comparison to the worst foods, such as beef or pork. Poultry, fish, and all meats contain significant amounts of inherent fat. A 3 1/2 oz. piece of roasted chicken holds about 240 calories, a large portion of which is fat. If you strip of the skin and throw away the dark meat, you are still left with plenty of calories, about 173. Contrast that with a baked potato weighing the same amount, holding only 85 calories. The potato contains carbohydrates, protein, vitamins and minerals, but very little fat. Chicken like all meats, is permeated by fat and has no carbohydrate or fiber.
Animal fats are not the only offenders. Vegetable oils are packed with calories too. For example, a baked potato has only about 95 calories and virtually no fat. If the same potato were turned to French fries, it would contain more than 270 calories, because of all the oil used in frying. It’s no good eliminating meats if you are just going to substitute oil – rich French fries and onion rings.
You may be saying that you hardly eat any fat. Ask yourself if you eat meat, poultry, fish, cheese, nuts or fired foods. If so, you are eating much more fat than you realized because these foods all inherent fat. Over the long run, they add calories, while displacing fiber and carbohydrates. So you feel less satisfied after meals, have less nutrient rich body. Most diets that include meat are higher in fat, lack fiber or any type of nutrition. This is not too say that lean meats are not healthier but they are nutrient poor as they are nowhere near the power of plant based nutrient rich meals to promote permanent weight control and healthy life.
In practical terms, the most potent weight control diet includes a plenty of greens, vegetables, fruits, beans and some amount of whole grains. It excludes any type of high fat dairy products, fried foods or added oil and only 10% of any type of animal product or none. Enjoy the natural taste of vegetables or salads without any oily dressings; try some of our nutrient rich nonfat dressings.
It helps to remember that fatty foods act like addicting substances. You will have a tendency to return to them; unless you start eating nutrient rich because once you are on this path you won’t be able to go back to eating junk as your body won’t be able to tolerate it. But for those who are yet to begin this journey I suggest cutting fatty foods almost entirely so that you are not continually teasing yourself and maintaining the taste for these foods. The modest amounts of naturally occurring oils in grains and vegetables will prevent a deficiency of any fats the body needs.