5 Reasons Why You Need To Eat Fat!

A lot of us believed it when we were told that ‘fat makes you fat’.  The result was a huge variety of low fat and fat free foods that many people flocked to.  Unfortunately, the claim that ‘fat makes you fat’ is untrue.   People need to have a certain amount of healthy fats in their diet.

Here are 5 reasons why:

  1. Fat absorbs vitamins.

If you go on a low/non-fat diet you’ll soon notice that your hair and skin will become dry, your nails will become brittle and you’ll feel weak.  This is because you need fat to help absorb fat soluble vitamins such as vitamins A, E and K.

  1. Fat keeps you feeling fuller longer.

Fat takes longer to digest than carbs or protein.  This means that you’ll feel fuller longer and you won’t end up eating more than you need.  If you’ve ever been on a super low-fat diet you’ll probably have experienced some intense cravings for fatty foods.  This is your body’s way of getting you to eat the fat it needs.  If you’re getting enough of the right fats you won’t get those crazy intense cravings.

  1. Keep your hormones in check.

Fat is used to produce sex hormones.  If you don’t get enough fat in your diet you can really mess with your hormones which can cause all sorts of health and reproductive issues.

  1. Fat is good for your brain.

Fat is a crucial part of your brain structure.  It protects the nerve fibres in your brain by forming an insulating layer around them.  Fat also helps the nerves carry messages faster.  If you’ve ever been on a low-fat diet you may have noticed a feeling of ‘brain fog’.  Your brain can’t operate optimally without enough of the right fats.

  1. Fat is an essential part of cell structure.

The membrane of every single cell in your body needs fat to form properly.  Without fat the integrity of your cells is compromised which could lead to self-destruction of the cells leading ultimately to health issues.

Excellent Sources of Fat:

Avocados

Whole eggs

Fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, trout, sardines and herring

Nuts such as almonds, cashews, walnuts, macadamia nuts just to name a few

Chia seeds

Healthy oils such as olive, hemp, grapeseed and coconut

Full fat yogurt – go for Greek for the higher protein 😉

Butter!  Butter is a great source of healthy fat.  It’s a natural food and as long as you don’t over eat it, it’s a great source of fat to include in your diet.

Interesting Benefits of Chia Seeds

I was recently visiting with a girlfriend of mine who’s an avid runner and she mentioned that she uses chia seeds in her morning shake.  I’ve heard of chia seeds before and know they’re good for you but she told me something I wasn’t aware of.  Chia seeds actually help to keep you hydrated!  I decided that I had better look into the benefits of chia seeds!

5 Interesting Benefits of Chia Seeds

  1. Helps with hydration.

Chia seeds absorb 30 times their weight in water!  For you this means that they will help regulate your body fluid levels and retain electrolytes.  Both of these factors will help you to safely get through long workouts even when the heat and humidity are high.

  1. Reduces Inflammation and joint pain.

Chia seeds contain omega-3 fatty acids.  Omega-3 fatty acids are anti-inflammatory which means they’ll help reduce inflammation in your body which will help reduce joint pain.

  1. Accelerates post workout recovery.

Two important things needed for post workout recovery are amino acids and antioxidants.  Chia seeds contain both!

  1. Keeps you energized.

Chia seeds are very absorbent.  They expand to up to 10 times their size when soaked in water and form a gel-like substance.  This gel-like substance will actually slow down the rate at which you turn carbohydrates into sugar.  This means that the carbs you eat will be able to fuel your body for longer periods of time and also stabilizes your blood sugar.

  1. Helps with weight loss.

If you’re trying to lose weight you should start adding chia seeds to your diet.  They’re high in fibre and nutritionally dense which means they’ll fill you up and provide you with extra nutients without adding a lot of extra calories.  And, as mentioned above, their absorbent qualities help to regulate blood sugar so you don’t get those spikes and drops which can wreak havoc on your body and appetite.  Some studies have shown that chia seeds also help prevent high cholesterol and high triglycerides.

How To Start Using Chia Seeds Today!

Chia seeds can be used in many different ways.  You can eat them as is or try adding them to a salad, oatmeal, yogurt, cottage cheese.  The possibilities are endless!  Some people like to make a chia seed drink by soaking 1 or 2 tablespoons in water for 5-10 minutes.  The taste is a very mild nutty taste. The texture is very gel-like though so if you’re sensitive to textures you may not like this option.  My friend adds them to her smoothie.

Keep in mind that chia seeds are very high in fibre which means they could cause digestive issues if you’re not used to having a lot of fibre in your diet.  As with anything new, start small to see how your body handles it.