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A lot of us know that eating fat is no longer considered taboo or something to fear – in fact many people have been turning to avocados, walnuts, cold-water fish and flaxseeds for a while now for their Omega-3 richness in order to boost their moods. Omega-3s are not the only healthy fat however. Coconut oil, for example, is a highly beneficial saturated fat (yes, you read that right) that actually cleanses and builds the liver, rather than stressing it out like most cooked fats do. The key to understanding how to eat healthy fats lies on its processing and heating. Raw fats are always better than cooked – in fact, you should never heat a fat unless it has a high smoking point like coconut oil. Even olive oil should be eaten raw, never cooked.
Interestingly, some fats actually help to go in and digest fats in your body. Take avocado for example. Avocado contains potassium and magnesium, which help to relax the nervous system, leading to less stress-eating and cortisol production (a hormone that causes the body to store belly fat). It also contains L-carnitine, which helps the liver to burn stored fat! Avocados are also high in water content and digestive enzymes, providing for easy movement through the body. Most unprocessed fat-containing foods contain other components that actually aid the digestion and burning of fat in the body so be sure to include them in your weight-loss program.
Imagine a salad with just lemon, salt and pepper on it. Now imagine that salad drizzled and tossed with olive oil as well. Somehow, the salad is automatically more delicious due to its mouth-feel. An avocado sandwich is incredibly satisfying, as is a stir-fry made with coconut oil as opposed to simply with broth. Eat healthy fats for that little bit of lusciousness in your meal.
When we undertake diets filled with fruits and vegetables, sometimes we need a little extra something to feel that extra bit of satiation that feels good in the stomach and holds us over for a while longer. Fruits and vegetable tend to move in and out of the stomach very quickly, so we have to eat a bit more than others, so by adding in avocados, walnuts, coconut oil, olive oil, flax oil, and other sources of healthy fats, we are able to feel more fulfilled after a meal while knowing that we are providing our body with something that is beneficial for it.
2 Hormonal Support
Essential fatty acids support our hormone system by supporting the brain and the glands that make hormones. When we consume foods, we want to make sure that we are supporting our body, not our emotions, as emotional eating tends to burden the body and wreak havoc on the hormonal system as anyone with serious consistent cravings can tell you. The ups and downs of one’s mood will have one repeating the cycle of eating refined, processed, fatty, and sugary foods which will only speed the cycle of the bad-food-bad-mood wheel. Eating health whole foods and unheated, raw fats will help one to gain control over their hormones and therefore their reliance on food for mood boosting.
1 Brain Power
As mentioned, fats are excellent for the brain, particularly Omega-3’s. Essential fatty acids like Omega-3’s are beneficial for blood vessels and nerves, and the neurons in our brain need them to build their cell walls. Unfortunately, the brain is very inefficient at making its own fatty acids on its own, so we must get them from food.
Gone are the days when fat is the enemy and a slice of avocado on a salad would be one’s total fat allowance for the day. By simply replacing the heated, refined oils and fats in your diet for the raw whole fats now widely available, you will increase the health of your body while enjoying the satisfaction that only fats can provide.