Eat the Right Fat
The Borneo Post - Sun, 12 January 2003
Fat is back: Eating butter and
drinking milk - In the right amounts - can be good for the heart.
There is no other known form of nutrition
that has a worse image than fat. We always hear that fat makes us
overweight and age before our time. It clogs up our arteries and serves as
a precursor to cancer. The assurance that food is low in fat or without
fat immediately makes it healthy in the eyes of many. Anyone eating fat,
on the other hand, is a unrepentant fool, someone who is slowly eating
him- or herself to death.
Today, many people are doing the same thing. They don't eat fat. However,
it's not because they don't like it but rather because they have been told
it will make them fat. According to an increasing number of nutritional
experts, this is not necessarily the case. For years now, more and more
products, which are low in fat are being sold in supermarkets. But people
have nonetheless never been as fat as today.
Fat is necessary
for our bodies. It carries out an array of important functions:
FAT gives us energy.
FAT provides us with vitamins.
FAT gives food its taste.
FAT is an important building block for cells.
FAT is a raw material for hormones and other regulatory substances in
This lies partly in the
fact that we're cheating. We are, of course, eating much more today than
20 or 30 years ago. We don't have a bad conscience about it either,
because we feel it isn't fat, after all, only low-fat yoghurt along with a
can of Diet Coke. Naturally, fat still play a definitive role in our being
thin or overweight. But as the Mew England Journal of Medicine wrote, 'the
decisive factor is not how much fat you eat, but the kind of fat you eat'.
Nevertheless, without a doubt, we all eat too much fat. We eat substantial
meals, partly for historic reasons. In times of food shortages, as in
Europe during the Second World War, fat played an absolutely vital role in
nutrition. Fat filled and satisfied those who could get it. Those who had
to do hard physical work got their energy from fat. Not without reason do
we still speak of a 'hearty meal', meaning that the meal is large, very
satisfying and certainly not without fat.
Times have quickly changed, but our eating habits have not quite kept
pace. Only very few people today are engaged in hard physical work. Most
people sit in cars, offices and in the evening at home in front of the
television. This means that a person now needs less fat than 30 or 40
years ago. But that is not the only thing wrong with our current eating
habits: most of the fat we eat is particularly unhealthy.
All fats have the same basic structure. A few simple differences are
decisive in determining if it is good or bad for us. Fat consists of
molecules and fatty acids. The framework of these fatty acids consists of
carbon atoms, which in turn combine with hydrogen atoms. If each carbon
atom finds a hydrogen atom, then we speak of saturated fats. If a few of
the carbon atoms remain single, we term these unsaturated fats.
It is important to know this because these terms are increasingly being
used when speaking of fat.
Three Simple Rules for Dealing with Fat
I. Eat balanced diet. If the food mix
is right then your fat intake will be OK.
II. Fall in love with fresh fruits and vegetables. Anyone enjoying
a good range of these will not have problems with fat intake.
III. Use high-quality oils. Don't be confused by the array of names
in the supermarket.
Eat balanced meals, put
your main emphasis on vegetables and fruit. Then you won't be stressed by
10 Best Tricks for Dealing with Fat
||Variety is the
spice of life. - Eat a good mix of fruits and vegetables. If you
do this, you can forget about fat-reduction pills.
play sport. - Have you sinned with an over-abundance of chips?
Then atone for it by swimming or jogging.
oils. - Oil should be thrown out after use.
||Don't cut down
too fast. - You cannot trick your body. If you eat light, it
will ask for two portions.
- Fat can be hidden anywhere, especially in pastries, pies, alcohol,
quality. - Always keep this in your mind whenever you go to
supermarket. Remember, what goes inside your body is from what you
||Treat your oil
with care. - Don't buy large amounts and be sure to store in a
dark place. Good oil is very sensitive. Keep it in a dry, dark and
||Down with fat.
- Don't breathe easy too early. Naturally you're eating too much
per day - go easy on your intake.
||Try a few
alternatives. - How about hemp oil? It tastes good and contains
many unsaturated fatty acids.
||Fats make you
sexy. - Laboratory tests with animals have shown that eating a
low-fat diet is detrimental to the sex drive.