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Low-Fat Diets

Posted Jul 02 2009 9:00pm
I always ask the same question when someone tells me they're on a LOW-FAT DIET. Why?

The answers are usually something like:

1. Fats are bad for me.

2. I'm trying to lose weight on my low-fat diet.

3. I saw this commercial on television and the people talked about how their low-fat diet helped them lose weight.

4. I've tried alot of different diets so I want to see if this one will work for me.

Okay, you get the picture....

All of these diets are getting "tired"......low-fat, low-carb, high-protein, etc.

The same solution works for fat loss and weight loss: regular exercise, active lifesytle and a nutritious, balanced meal plan. Having said that, a low-fat, low-carb or high-protein diet can sometimes be used with short-term success....but, your meals should be balanced and nutritious most of the time. That means fats, carbs and protein in your meal plan.

You need fats. Fats are important for your diet because they help you feel full and keeps skin, hair and nails healthy. You should limit your intake of saturated fats (usually solid at room temperature, such as butter, lard, poultry fat, cream, milk, cheeses, etc.) and trans fats (partially hydrogenated fats found in packaged foods and fast foods). Saturated fats and trans fats raise bad (LDL) cholesterol levels.

Instead, increase your intake of heart-healthy unsaturated fats (they are usually liquid at room temperature, such as olive and canola oil). They also include unsaturated fat from such foods as fish, nuts, seeds and avocados. Aim for your fats to be about 20% of your total daily calories. And, most of these fats should be unsaturated.

If you're trying to lose weight, maintain a daily caloric deficit (burn more calories than you eat) of about 200 calories. Its the caloric surplus that puts weight on your body!

One more thing: many food items labeled as low-fat are high-calorie! Always check the food label.

So, why are you on that low-fat diet?

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