Opinion: Dietary Fat

Last week, the AHA (American Heart Association) reported that saturated fats are bad for you.

“This all would have been fine and uncontroversial — if the study authors hadn’t come for the coconuts. But come they did. First, they noted that coconut oil’s healthy image may not reflect scientific opinion — 72 percent of Americans rate coconut oil as a “healthy food,” compared with only 37 percent of nutritionists. Coconut oil is 82 percent saturated fat, they wrote, a greater percentage than butter, palm oil, or lard. And because multiple studies found that coconut oil increases LDL, or “bad,” cholesterol, a cause of heart disease, the report’s authors concluded: “We advise against the use of coconut oil.”

This quote is taken from New York Magazine’s article on the topic.

Long story short, there is a lot we still don’t know about certain foods. But what we DO know is that too much of anything, even the “healthy” stuff, can end up being bad. Complex carbohydrates, fat, and protein are all macronutrients essential to the functioning of the body. Individually, carbs or fat (most targeted nutrients) will not make you fat or unhealthy, unless you are consuming more than your body is able to burn off.

Personally, I like to include a little of each macronutrient in every meal.

For example, breakfast could be eggs (protein + fat) w/ sweet potatoes (carbs) and spinach (carbs) cooked in olive oil (fat) w/some avocado (fat).

Fat has more calories per gram, but you’re most likely already consuming way fewer grams of it than carbs. 

It’s good to go for unprocessed oils or fats as well, like olive oil, coconut oil, avocado, and nuts and seeds.

Long story short, eat fat! Just not too much…

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