5 Reasons to Avoid Fat Free Food
Eating Fat Free Might Actually Help You Gain More Weight!
It seems counter-intuitive. We see the message on television commercials and in the grocery aisles – FAT FREE! Is it possible that you could actually be worse off eating fat free foods? Yes – in fact you may actually GAIN MORE FAT by eating fat free foods. How could this be possible?
War on Fat
The war on fat has been going hard-core for at a least a decade now and marketers and consumers are listening. The other day I was at the grocery store looking for some ‘regular’ yogurt. By regular I mean fatty yogurt – the way it WAS MEANT TO BE! I spent almost 10 minutes trying to find it. I had to try and divert my attention from the flashy, slick labels professing zero fat and fat reduced. These products dominate the prime real estate of the yogurt aisle!
Reasons to Ingest Fat
Fat is one of the three macro nutrient classes that humans NEED to consume in addition to Protein and Carbohydrates. Fat is important for:
- proper brain/nerve functioning
- insulation and energy storage
- protection for our organs
- absorption of Vitamins D, E, A, and K
- hormone regulation
While it is true that excess fat intake is bad for you – certain fats are needed and actually HEALTHY! The Omega 3 fatty acids that are found in fresh cold water fish such as salmon, mackerel and sardines are very good for us. We will go into more detail about Omega 3 vs Omega 6 in a future post. Other good fats include extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil and avocados. Stay away from cooking oils from deep fried foods and anything that says hydrogenated vegetable oil. Basically anything that is processed. Hydrogenation helps preserve the product but this raises trans fat which has been shown to raise LDL (low density lipoprotein). Those fats ARE BAD!
So then back to the title of the post – Here are 5 Reasons to Stay Away From Fat Free Foods
- Fat Substitute #1 – If there is no fat then how do you make it taste good? Add some fillers like starch, or vegetable gums. Do you know what a lot of the tasty ‘fat free’ yogurts have in them? CORN!!! Check out ‘corn starch’ in the ingredient list. Mmmmmmm corn yogurt!
- Overeating – Because there is no fat – there is nothing to tell the body that you’re full as fat satiates (indicates a feeling of fullness). So you end up craving other fatty foods like poutine. This results in more fat gain!
- Nature – Good ol’ Mother Nature doesn’t manufacture fat free animals so why should we? Butter, meat, ice cream, sour cream, cheese, mayonnaise etc. are SUPPOSED to have fat! That is why they are so delicious!
- Vitamin Deficiency – Eating fat-free salad dressing will decrease or inhibit your ability to absorb Vit D, E, A, K (the fat soluble) vitamins. That is why a good salad topper is extra virgin olive oil. Always remember to eat good fat with your vegetables.
- Fat Substitute #2 – Another easy way to make it tasty without the fat – add sugar! Even worse are the artificial sweeteners. As in Fat Substitute #1 people tend to crave more sugary foods if they are ingesting artificial ones. It is more common for people gain weight by taking in too many carbohydrates (sugars) rather than too much fat.
So – eat the good fats, reduce the bad ones and GET OFF YOUR ADIPOSE TISSUE and BE ACTIVE!!!
This article is also featured on The GoodLife Fitness Blog.