Fat: To Eat Or Not To Eat
When you are following the triglycerides diet, you will find a lot of controversy as to whether to eat less fat or eat less concentrated carbs to lower your triglycerides level to an optimal range. Let’s talk about fat and triglycerides. Eat fat? Don’t eat fat? Eat only good fat? What should you do?
Types Of Fat
The BAD Fat
There are basically four types of fat and knowing these will set you on the right path for lowering your triglycerides. There is the “bad fat”, which is found within fatty dairy food and red meat. This is a saturated fat.
Another bad fat that you need to know about is trans fat. This is a man-made fat that is extremely unhealthy. In fact, it is downright dangerous for your health. You will find trans fat located throughout fried food and in commercially processed foods.
The Good Fat
Of the good fats, there are two main types: monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat. Monounsaturated fats are typically liquid when at room temperature and solid or semi-solid when chilled. A perfect example of monounsaturated fat is olive oil.
Monounsaturated fat, when eaten in moderation, may benefit you health-wise by reducing the level of the bad cholesterol in your blood. Monounsaturated fat also provides some beneficial nutrients, such as the anti-oxidant vitamin E.
Polyunsaturated fats are the omega-3 and omega-6 fats we hear so much about. The best sources of these fats are from plant-based foods and oils. Polyunsaturated fat has been shown to reduce cholesterol levels, which, in turn, can lower your risk of heart disease. These may also decrease your risk of type 2 diabetes.
There is the omega-3 fat found in some kinds of fish and nuts. Omega-3 fats are healthier types of polyunsaturated fats. They are also considered essential in that your body can’t make them. You need to get them by eating them.
Another type of unsaturated essential fat is the omega-6 fat. While omega-6 fats are healthy for you, the key is to keep the ratio of omega-3 and omega-6 fats in balance. Too much omega-6 fats can lead to health problems. The typical American diet is heavy in saturated fat, trans fat and omega-6 fats and low in omega-3 fat. That explains why we have so many health problems.
Recommended Ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3
An example of a diet that has a healthier omega-3 to omega-6 ratio is the Mediterranean diet, which is loaded with fruits, vegetables and whole grains. A meat-heavy diet, like the American diet, tips the balance to an unhealthy ratio. The ideal balance should be within the 2:1 to 4:1 range of omega-6 to omega-3. That is the max. An even lower ratio will provide additional health benefits.
To improve your omega ratio you should reduce your consumption of animal and dairy fat and processed and fast foods. You should also use extra virgin olive oil instead of other vegetable oils. Add the oily-type of fish to your diet, fish like salmon, herring and mackerel. Vegetarian sources of omega-3 fatty acids include walnuts, flaxseed and flax oil.
Consider No Fat
The fastest way to decrease your triglycerides and cholesterol levels without the use of medications is to follow a vegan, fat-free and high fiber diet. One such diet is the one developed by Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr., M.D. and explained his book Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease. You can check out what Dr. Esselstyn has to say about fat in the diet in the video below.
When I got the results of my lipid panel and discovered that I had metabolic syndrome, I decided to make myself ‘heart attack proof by following Dr. Esselstyn’s diet. I know that I can correct the metabolic syndrome and avoid not only heart disease but also diabetes and cancer by following this diet.