Friday, July 5, 2013

Rethinking real food.

Growing up in the eighties and early nineties we got a  message burned into our brains. FAT IS BAD, FAT IS EVIL. The message was everywhere.
see, hear, speak nothing of high fat foods, only low fat varieties
 It was all over the news, billboards, books, and infomercials showing us how to knock out the fat. Everywhere you turned you saw and heard about the benefits of a low fat or non-fat diet. The saying was "Fat is what is making you fat". We all followed these crazy low fat diets and what happened? We all got fatter and we still screamed for more low fat foods because doctors and health Gurus are telling us that low fat is the way to live. Food producers trying to keep up with the demand were loading up food items with sugar, salt and all kinds of flavorings and chemicals to make up for the lack of fats. It is not a good combination for health yet people still believe that low fat is the way to go because it has been beat into our brains that low fat is the way.

One of things that I am having the hardest time with is rewiring my brain to believe that FAT IS GOOD. It has been so ingrained in me that any and all fat is bad, I have struggled with buying those "high fat" foods. I have started buying whole milk and yogurt and real sour cream. Butter, and cream (which were so against the rules) are now a staple in my fridge.  I have started cooking with real olive oil and coconut oil.  I have added nuts, seeds and avocado as the major source of the fats in my diet. I feel better and my brain is working better because I am fueling it with the fats it needs to thrive, yet I still struggle with the thoughts that it might be bad for me because it is so ingrained into my brain that fats are bad.

Dairy farmers know that fat is good. They just supply what the public market is demanding. We are demanding low fat dairy products so they keep supplying them. It is so ingrained in us. Low fat dairy is being sold to us for our children's health telling us that our kids will get fat if they eat full fat dairy, but know this, a calf that is not fed enough fat will die. Mother nature made milk as a good start for growing babies. Even our own babies need the fat and nutrition in mother's milk to survive. We need fat to survive. Our brain is sixty percent fat. We need the essential fatty acids for our brain to engage properly. So many are getting the wrong fats and an overload of them. We are getting plenty of fat into our diets, yet our brains are starving  and crying for fat because we are not getting the right fats that our body and brain can use.

We need real fats, the fats produced by nature itself. Olive oil pressed right from the olives, coconut oil squeezed right from a coconut, avocados, nuts, eggs, seeds etc. These things I understand. Many of the other oils I choose not to use as often. Soybean, canola, cottonseed and many other oils are so unnatural. Take some plants that have a relatively small amount of oil in them and grind them up, mix them with  toxic chemicals  and put them under extreme pressure in order to extract that small amount of oil. Then it goes through a whole process of heating and more pressure and more chemicals to clean and deodorize it so it does not taste and smell of all the chemicals. Take this highly refined oil and run electricity through it along with other stuff to hydrogenate it and you have something that our body does not know what to do with, yet we eat this stuff by the boatload. Nearly every packaged product on the grocery store shelves (and many in the health food stores) contain hydrogenated oils. These are the bad fats that we should avoid and for good reason, yet so many of us are eating a ton of these processed fats because they are hidden and we do not see them and do not really register that they are there.

Because it is so ingrained in us that fat is bad, we are eliminating the added healthy fats  (the ones that we can see).  It is easy to eliminate those things we see.  so many  people avoid things like avocados, nuts and eggs which we really should be adding to our diets.  "They are high in fat,  so I can only eat them occasionally." Yes they are high in fat, but it is the good fat that our body is trying so hard to get into the brain. We should be eating so much more of them and so much less of the junk we are eating.  So many avoid cooking with butter or olive oil and use a nonstick cooking spray which I avoid like the plague (more on that in another post). Learn to cook with real fats. Avoid the processed foods. Just about any food that comes in a bag, box, or can that is ready to eat will have some form of these over processed oils in it not to mention the preservatives. We need to eat food as nature made it, not as man made it.

I have had to work hard on eliminating these negative thoughts about fat. It is getting easier  because my brain and body are saying "thank you." I am feeling so much better because I am eating well. I will continue to eliminate the junk that does nothing to fuel my body and brain.

photos courtesy of Microsoft images

shared as part of real food wednesdays


  1. I think this is an area where the American public is so mislead. Yes, we need fats. And typically when something is fat-free it is full of awful chemicals.

  2. I can't agree more! I am in the process of reading Sally Fallon's book called Nourishing Traditions where she covers this very topic! Thank you for sharing. If you are interested, I have a link up party and would love for you to share it with others.

  3. I totally agree, healthy fats are definitely the way forward. I've started incorporating more of them in my diet, particularly avocado, and I have noticed a real difference in how I feel!

  4. Our brains are 60% fat?! Interesting. And interesting info on how canola, vegetable, etc, oils are made. I'm trying to go with coconut and olive. :)
    Thanks for sharing this at the Healthy Tuesday hop!

  5. We've been reassessing this as a family too. Thanks for sharing your info on Tuesday Greens!

  6. Thank GOODNESS we need fat or else I would be depressed - Ha! Figuratively and Literally!!

  7. Such good info! So true! Compared to the general recommendations by the USDA, etc. my family eats a very high fat diet! Full-fat dairy, butter, cream, coconut oil, nuts, seeds, bacon, fat on our meat, etc.

    And all 10 of us (yes, we have eight children!) are all thin and active and healthy!

    Our bodies NEED fat. And let's be honest, tastes soooooo good! :-)