Fats…They Are Not The Enemy

In America, the fallout from the 90’s when everyone seemed to be marketing everything from milk, to meats, to snack foods and even candy as fat-free  still lingers.  No other decade was like the 90’s in that respect.  It just goes to show the kind of power a small number of corporate giants can have here in the U.S.  Get a couple of studies done by a couple of scientists and run with it, all the way to the bank.  What most of us know today, especially those of us in the natural healthcare industry, is that to deprive the body of fats is a good way to make the body quite angry with us.  Please don’t get me wrong, by no means am I supporting the idea of running out and filling up on ice cream and potato chips all the time.  There are limits to the amounts we need as well as a big difference between the more healthy fats and the ones we should greatly limit. But to avoid them is not a good idea.  Especially the Omega 3 fats.  These days a large percentage of the population is deficient in Omega 3’s, which I believe is an issue that should be addressed .

So what is the big deal about fats?  Well the fact is that fatty acids, or as us plain folk call them, fats, play a role in virtually all cell functions in our bodies.  The problem we have today is that people aren’t taking in fats often enough out of fear of getting fat, and the people who are taking in fats are taking in the wrong ones in vast amounts.  This creates an imbalance in the body, which can lead to inflammation.  When we are talking fats we are talking about Saturated Fat(mainly animal fats and coconut oil), Polyunsaturated Fat(corn oil, flaxseed oil, safflower oil, soy oil, sunflower oil, fish oil etc.), Monounsaturated Fat(olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil), and the killer, Trans Fat(partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, avoid this).  What the body really wants is a nice balance of these fats with saturated fats being consumed in moderation and more importantly a good balance of Omega 6 fatty acids(found in mostly all vegetable oils, nuts, seeds, poultry etc.) to Omega 3’s(found primarily in the oil of cold water fish, in particular herring, sardines, salmon, mackerel, anchovies etc.).  Today in this country however we have a 25-1 ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 intake.  This is a problem.  But why? Continue reading