It may seem a bit counterintuitive, especially after decades of being told about the dangers of fat, but dietary fat is absolutely necessary for good health, and it's even essential if you're looking to lose weight. In the 1970s and 1980s, it was taken for the gospel that dietary fat was Enemy Number One when it came to your health and your waistline. In reality, the most prominent issues are processed grains, added sugar, and trans-fats. For optimal testosterone production in your body, 25% of your diet should include healthy fats.
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Low-Fat diets were the rage, substituting high volumes of salt and carbohydrates for healthy fat. Trans-Fats were sold to the consumer as a healthy alternative to regular fats when, in reality, they play a significant role in heart disease and other dangerous conditions like obesity and cancer.
Today, we're learning the truth. It's not fat that is dangerous, but the types of fat we consume and the ratio by which we consume them. Fat is necessary. It helps maintain hormone balance, and fats are the building blocks of the hormones that allow us to function optimally in our day-to-day lives.
A smart combination of protein and healthy fat is the key to bolstering and maintaining Testosterone levels, burning body fat (which originates primarily from carbohydrates), and building lean muscle.
What are the Types of Fat?
There are four types of fat: Saturated Fat, Polyunsaturated Fat, Monounsaturated Fat, and Trans-Fat. Trans-Fat should be avoided in its entirety, but the other three forms of fat are all critical. Though the science of nutrition is constantly evolving, a good rule of thumb is that you should be drawing equally from all three forms of essential fats.
Saturated Fat – Saturated fat is most commonly associated with animal products such as cream, cheese, milk, and lard, but there are also vegetable oils like coconut and palm oil which have high levels of saturated fat. Saturated fat has the highest melting point, and is generally solid at room temperature. Though saturated fat is necessary and essential, it's the type of fat we tend to rely on too much, which leads to high levels of “bad” LDL Cholesterol and suppression of “good” HDL Cholesterol.
Polyunsaturated Fat – Polyunsaturated fats are a broad category of fats which have the net effect of helping to control overall cholesterol levels, while not having a substantial impact on HDL Cholesterol. At room temperature, most polyunsaturated fats are liquid. It's important to include fish in your weekly dietary rotation, because many fish are high in polyunsaturated fat, such as tuna, sardines, mackerel, trout, and salmon. Some other examples are corn oil, sunflower oil, seeds, and nuts.
Omega-Three Fatty Acids are a particular category of Polyunsaturated fat. The fish listed above are all high in Omega-Threes, as well as other foods such as Brussels sprouts, egg yolks, flaxseed, and walnuts. Omega-Threes are good for the heart because they help control triglycerides in the bloodstream, which helps keep the heart healthy and wards off heart disease.
Monounsaturated Fat – Monounsaturated fats seem to have the highest net benefit of all forms of fat. Monounsaturated fat is associated with higher levels of HDL Cholesterol while also reducing the volume of LDL Cholesterol in the bloodstream. Significant sources of monounsaturated fat include seeds, nuts, peanut oil, canola oil, and olive oil, as well as margarine produced from such oils.
Benefits of Dietary Fats
Including a Healthy Ratio of Fat in Your Diet Leads to Weight Loss
Research has shown that adopting a diet that includes conscientious consumption of dietary fats leads to increased metabolism and fat-burning power. This is one of the secrets that was discovered when studying the Mediterranean Diet. In one study, patients on a low-fat diet lost 6.4 pounds on average, while those that ate moderate amounts of fat lost 9.7 pounds. They also benefited from improved blood sugar levels and had a stronger response to insulin.
Dietary Fat Boosts Libido
Dietary fat is not only crucial for maintaining metabolism and healthy weight, but it also promotes sex drive. That's because the fats that we eat are used in the process of producing essential hormones such as Testosterone. In both men and women, Testosterone is absolutely necessary to promote feelings of sexual desire. Scientific research has clearly shown that diets low in fat correlate directly with suppressed Free Testosterone levels. One study showed that a low-fat diet led to 12% lower Testosterone levels. When combined with other risk factors for Low Testosterone, 12% is a huge drop in production.
Dietary Fat Elevates Your Cognitive Processing and Brain Health
Omega-Three Fatty Acids have some extraordinary properties, as we touched on earlier. For example, they appear to have a dramatic impact on brain health. A diet high in Omega-Threes is scientifically associated with a lower risk of dementia as well as a barrier against depression. There is also evidence that dietary fat has substantial positive effects on focus and memory as well.
Dietary Fat Improves Nutrient Absorption and Utilization
Our bodies require a variety of different vitamins and minerals to function, and they all have their own unique and essential effects, but many need dietary fat to be effectively absorbed. Vitamins K, E, D, and A all require dietary fat to be absorbed by the intestines; otherwise, they will pass straight through your system. Dietary fat is a boon to health and entirely beneficial when consumed smartly and conscientiously!
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