Since I started working out with Optimal Body Fitness, things have been a lot different in terms of the foods I eat and when I eat. I've gotten a few questions recently about how much fat I eat in a day and what types of fat I eat.... so I wanted to do a little bloggy today about the low-down on eating healthy fats.
On any given day I eat at least 85g of fat. I'm not talking about french fries and ice cream... I mean like amazing, delicious, appetite suppressing, healthy fats like almonds and avocados. There is a lot of stigma out there regarding fats and it's becoming increasingly known that eating healthy fat makes you skinny (YES!) however it's super important to know the best kinds of fats to eat and how much to eat.
First off - you need to have fat at every single meal. I aim to have 15g of fat for most of my meals (I won't get into specifics) and that's about 1 half of an avocado. I love avocado... I eat it with chicken and spinach with a little sea salt and it's delicious! For 15g of fat I could also eat about 18 almonds. I like mixing almonds with ground chicken and steamed bok choy with sea salt. It's another big favourite of mine. We also have to remember that oil counts as a healthy fat (ie. olive or coconut or organic butter). When I make baked kale for dinner, I count the olive oil I use on it as part of my fat intake!
Needless to say it hasn't been a struggle to eat fats, especially because they are the main reason I don't get hungry at all during the day. When healthy fats enters the small intestine is slows digestion, increases fullness and reduces appetite. Ingesting healthy fats helps your body absorb vitamins A, D, and E which are vital for nervous system health. Eating monounsaturated fatty acids helps lower the bad cholesterol in your body, and protects against a build up of plaque in your arteries. OH - and they also help prevent belly fat. WHAT!? Yes.. you heard correctly. As long as you're consuming MUFA's, it will help prevent belly fat! What can you eat with MUFAs in them?
- olives and olive oil
- canola oil
- almonds, cashews, peanuts (or their butters)
- sesame seeds
Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids also aid in lowering the crappy cholesterol in our bodies, they include omega-3 fatty acids which boosts brain function (makes us smart!), helps strengthen our immune system and increases our mood (I need to remember this for when I'm grumpy). Omega-6 fatty acids (which we need less of than Omega-3 fatty acids) are great in providing the health of our eyes and skin! Where would you find PUFA's?
- salmon, mackerel, herring
- canola oil
- flax seed
- tofu (the unprocessed kind)
If you aren't already making a conscious effort to get some of these foods into your diet you could not only be limiting yourself in terms of the vitamins and minerals that come along with these foods, but they are SO GOOD and tasty! I know calories are a big thing for people and fatty foods such as these are high in calories.... but honestly, don't worry about it. The value and the benefits of these foods by far outweigh the fact that they are high in calories. Plus, if you include them with your meal, the chances of becoming hungry between meals lessens and it helps you eat less!
Do you include healthy fats into your diet? If so, how do you do it and what are your favourite "healthy-fatty foods"?