Poor fat! If fat were to have a Hollywood movie made of its history, it would definitely be characterized as the wrongly accused villain.
But don’t get me wrong here, just like with any wrongly accused villain, we’re not going to say that fat has NEVER caused harm because there are some out there that will “hurt” people if you come in contact with it too often. The wrongly accused would be Mr. Coconut Oil would make a great lead actor whereas Mr. Corn Oil wouldn’t because he really is a bad guy!
But today, we’re going to make this a happy story…one where we share all the good that our character, healthy fat, can do for others.
First, the healthy fat that we eat provides us adipose tissue which not only gives us padding to keep us safe and warm but is also necessary for energy when we run low from not eating. Fat is a very slow burning energy source that will keep us feeling full for quite some time.
Second, Fats give your body the fatty acids it needs to grow and to produce new cells and hormones. This is obviously vital to our wellbeing. We need a variety of saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats to maintain healthy cell membranes (NTA Fatty Acid Student Guide pg.13).
Third, fat also helps some vitamins move through your body. Vitamins A, D, E, and K are fat-soluble vitamins, which means they need some fat to be absorbed. It is all too common these days, possibly because of the low fat movement, that we are deficient in these very important vitamins especially to our bones and eyes. Eating that broccoli without a quality fat will keep those good nutrients from being absorbed.
Lastly, fat gives the mighty liver the “tools” to help in the creation of cholesterol and bile. We could not function without cholesterol and bile. Ironically, the bile is needed to break down the fats…it’s a beautiful plot twist!
We have been led to believe that fat in our diets isn’t necessary and this low fat movement born decades ago. But our health has declined over the years as well cutting out this essential nutrient is without a doubt one of the reasons. So get comfortable, pick a movie, grab that non-GMO popcorn and feel confident putting that grass-fed butter on top.