The Joys of Healthy Fats

The popular misconception that eating fat makes you fat has contributed to the obesity epidemic and a host of health problems. Here’s a quick explanation of how what you eats affects your weight and general health.

When you eat a carrot, it isn’t used as it is for energy and building blocks. It has to be broken down and processed for the nutrients to be used by the body. That’s the process of digestion.

The three kinds of food are Carbohydrates, Proteins and Fats. They are each digested in different ways. Everyone is different, but a good rule of thumb is that we should eat all three kinds of food in proportions of 40%, 30% and 30% respectively. That’s how our bodies work best and how our ancestors ate for centuries. It’s only recently that the American diet got so heavily skewed towards carbs.

Digestion breaks down food so that our body can use it for energy and growth. When we eat more food than we need immediately, the excess is stored so that we can use it when we aren’t eating.

Carbs, Fats and protein are each broken down through different processes. This is one reason it’s good to have a mix, so that the systems responsible for each process don’t get overburdened.

The three kinds of food are also used differently by the body. Carbs are either used for energy or stored as fat. Fats are broken down to energy, storage and building blocks. Proteins are used for building blocks and energy.

Based on the proportions of each we eat, we either become sugar burners (carb eaters) or fat burners. Our ancestors were fat burners but the modern diet is heavily sugar burning. As fuels, you could see sugar/carbs as the kindling that burns hot and fast. Fats are the big logs that burn slowly for a long time. Because of this, sugar burners get hungrier more often and they need to eat more calories to feel satisfied. Fat burners feel less hungry and have better sustained energy like a fire that burns all day.

When the low-fat diet craze took off, the culture shifted to sugar burners. Low-fat food is high carb sugar. Reliance on carbs makes us get hungrier, eat more often and eat more calories. And it leads to the roller coaster of the fast, hot burning fire. We eat more and more to keep the fire burning and the excess calories get stored as fat. It is harder for sugar burners to get energy by burning stored fat. They just keep stoking the fire with more excess carbs that keep getting stored as fat.

This is how the low-fat craze led to the obesity epidemic we find ourselves in now. The standard American diet is approaching 200 pounds of sugar a year, and is way higher than 40% carbohydrates. Our bodies are not designed to be sugar burners and besides obesity, this has led to a host of health problems.

If you are interested is becoming a fat burner instead of a sugar burner, nutritional therapy can help. And it will be a delicious and joyful transition! Check out my services page for more information and support.