In my one-on-one client sessions, I often talk a lot about Macronutrients, so I thought I’d share some of my thoughts. When we talk about nutrients in relation to food, we typically focus on Micronutrients and Macronutrients. Micronutrients are things like vitamins and minerals found in foods. Macronutrients are simply Proteins, Fats, and Carbohydrates. Whilst it’s very difficult to manage how many Micronutrients we can get from our food, it’s easier to manage our Macronutrients and it can have a profound effect on our energy, wellbeing, weight, sleep, and much more.
Given that there are three Macronutrients, I’m going to break the information down into a three-part blog series, over the next three months. Today we’re starting with the most important Macronutrient, that is FAT.
I feel like there is a lot of misinformation about fat. For a long time fat, and particularly saturated fat has been blamed for most of the modern diseases that people suffer from including heart disease, cancer, obesity, and more. Despite the research now clearly indicating we got that totally wrong, the fear of fat lives on in most people. It is this fear of fat, that has created most of the disease that we commonly see today.
I want to talk about the most important fats to eat, how to eat them, and why eating more of them will help you stay lean and healthy for a long time. Firstly, let’s start with the 2 most important fats, Monounsaturated and Saturated. Most people are familiar with the monounsaturated fats, they’re commonly referred to as the ‘good’ fats, like avocado and olive oil, whilst these fats are great for heart health, reducing inflammation and improving cholesterol levels, they’re no more important to consume than our saturated fats. Saturated fats are those fats that typically come from animals such as butter and cheese. Saturated fats form the core structural fats in the body. They have no known toxicity and many, many physiological benefits including bone health, liver protection, healthy cardiovascular function, immune system support, hormone health, and much more. Most of us are eating enough monounsaturated fats, but we need to be eating EQUAL amounts of saturated fats. Are you?
The other fats we can benefit from consuming are called Medium Chain Triglycerides. These fats are metabolised differently to other fats in the body, and have thermogenic qualities – this means they actually encourage fat burning. You can get these fats from most of the coconut products; coconut milk, butter, cream.
Finally, the other fat that we really need for optimal health is Omega 3. This fat source needs to come from seafood. Our ancestors typically had a balance of Omega 3 to Omega 6 ratio of 1:1. Thanks to all the Omega 6 fats in our processed and restaurant-prepared foods today, our ratio is more likely to be 20:1 in the favour of Omega 6. The best sources of Omega 3 are Caviar, Herring, Anchovy, Salmon, Bluefin Tuna, and Oysters. Also, things like Flax Seed, Chia Seeds, and other plant-based oils do not deliver EPA and DHA, which are the most bioavailable forms of Omega 3 which are essential for keeping our inflammation down and ensuring we have healthy immune, cardiovascular and cognitive function. I don’t recommend eating foods high in Omega 6, simply because we are already getting more than an adequate dosage in our diets. Omega 6, taken in high doses is VERY inflammatory and has been linked to an increase in all of the modern illnesses we encounter today.
This Pyramid sums up perfectly how we should be eating and prioritising fats in our diet, focusing primarily on the base and working our way up to the top.
Hopefully, this helps you focus on getting the right kinds of fats into your diet. Watch how making these changes improves your health, and how you look and feel.