Authentic Wellness April Newsletter
The Facts on Fat
Along with carbohydrates and protein, fat is one of the three macronutrients in our diet. For a long time fat had a bad reputation, and everything "low fat" was deemed healthy. Thankfully that fad has passed and healthy fats are getting the recognition they deserve. Fat is used in our body as an energy source, for growth and development of cell function, to transport fat-soluble vitamins, and also for proper functioning of the nerve cells in our brains. When it comes to dietary fat what matters most is the type of fat you eat, since all fats are not created equally. When fat is taken out of a food to make it low-fat, generally that means sugar or some other artificial substance is added to make it taste good. Below I break down the different types of fat and what food sources you will find them in.
Monounsaturated fats aka "good fats" help to increase your HDL (good cholesterol) in your body as well as help lower your blood cholesterol levels. These fats are usually liquid at room temperature or solid when chilled.
-Foods rich in monounsaturated fats include: olive oil, olives, avocados, avocado oil, nuts, seeds and sunflower oil.
Polyunsaturated fats are another good source of fats, and can help reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood. They also contain nutrients to help develop and maintain your bodies cells, as well as containing anti-inflammatory properties. Oils that are rich in polyunsaturated fats contain essential fats (can only be found in the diet) that your body needs to function. These are called Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids.
-Good sources of omega 3's and omega 6's include: fatty fish, chia seeds, flax seeds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, and spinach.
Trans fats=bad fats and should be completely eliminated from your diet. Trans fats are considered the worst type of fat because they increases your bad cholesterol and decreases your good cholesterol. In fact, trans fats are now being banned from many packaged goods because of their harmful affects to our health.
Examples of trans fats are: partially hydrogenated oils, most processed foods, fast foods, candy, chips, pastries and deep-fried foods.
Saturated fats are not as harmful as trans fats but should be consumed in moderation, and from good sources. Saturated fats are solid at room temperature, and often come from animal products. Coconut oil has a unique type of saturated fat called MCT's (medium chain triglycerides). MCT's are metabolized differently in that they go strait from the liver to the digestive tract and are used as a quick energy source, rather than being stored as body fat. Some examples of good saturated fats include:
-Grass-fed meats, grass-fed butter, coconut oil, coconut milk, pasture raised egg yolks, and greek yogurt.
Now that you have the facts on fat, don't be afraid to start incorporating healthy fats into your diet. They are good for you skin and hair, keep you fuller for a longer period of time, and they provide you with energy to get through your day. Don't fear the fat!
Client Spotlight of the Month
Congratulations to Jess and Emily for being this months client spotlight. Jess and Em have been doing my 6-month Health Coaching program since December and have made great strides in their fitness and overall health. We've been working on incorporating more balanced nutrition habits, food journaling, creating a sustainable running program, developing a consistent at home cooking routine, and achieving their weight loss goals. They have been knocking out their goals and creating new, healthy habits in their everyday lives. It's been great to work with them as a couple and see them work together and support each other in creating a happier, healthier lifestyle and home life. Keep up the great work!
Recipe of the Month
By popular request I decided to include my granola recipe as this months recipe of the month. It's packed with healthy fats (yeah fat!), fiber and is a delicious and portable snack to take with you when you're on the go. Enjoy!
2 cups rolled oats
1 cup roughly chopped mixed nuts of choice (I like to do almonds and pecans)
2 tbs flax seeds
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/3 cup shredded coconut
2 tbs coconut sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
Optional- 1/2 cup dried cherries or cranberries
1/4c pure maple syrup
3 tbs coconut oil
1tsp vanilla extract
1. Pre-heat the oven to 275 degrees and place the rack in the middle of the oven.
2. Combine all dry ingredients in a big bowl and mix thoroughly.
3. In a small saucepan on the stove bring 1/4 cup pure maple syrup, 1/4 cup honey, 3 tbs coconut oil, 1 tsp vanilla extract and 1tbs of water to a simmer.
4. Remove mixture from heat and pour over the dry ingredients. Stir to combine, making sure that all of the oats are mixed with the liquid.
5. Evenly spread the granola mixture onto a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes at 275 degrees. Stir the mixture once or twice while its baking to ensure even toasting of the oats.
6. Stir in dried fruit if desired (1/2 cup dried cherries, cranberries, etc) and bake for 15 more minutes or until golden brown. Let cool, then store in air-tight jar for up two weeks.