Wednesday, 1 June 2016

The Fat Debate

The bell toll and drums rolled when a report by the leading obesity charity advised the Nation to eat more fat and less carbohydrate we were also advised to stop worrying about cholesterol.

This goes against 30 years of Public Health Advice which is we should less fat and less carbohydrate.  The nation was left confused and the question was asked,
What Should we eat? The advice on what we should eat changes constantly, this recent report does very little to help.

This blog post will provide information on food types, and their benefits to enable you make an informed decision.

Firstly the 3 main nutrients we need are  know as macronutrients, these are fat, protein and carbohydrates

Protein:
Protein Is found in every cell in the body. It accounts for 16% of our body weight.


Benefits: Protein helps slow down the digestion of carbohydrates foods and informs the brain that we have eaten enough.
Protein speeds up the metabolism.

Protein rich foods are
Red meat, chicken, turkey, duck, eggs, soya, tofu, milk, pulses, (lentils), nuts and seeds,

carbohydrates
These are the body’s main source of energy, they play a major role in keeping us healthy.
There are many different carbs, such as bread, beans, milk, potatoes, biscuits, pasta, cakes and cereals. The most common are sugars, fibres and starches.

Benefits:
Carbs are a source of nutrients such as B vitamins, iron, calcium and fibre.
Carbs are known as brain food, glucose is needed for brain power. This is because the brain cells depend on a steady stream of glucose to function. This explains the loss of concentration if we do not eat enough carbs.
A diet high in fiber helps with bowel movement.
Eating a diet low in carbohydrate helps control weight, as well as controlling type two diabetes

Starchy food contain more sugar than protein, hence the suggestion is to reduce our intake of this food group. The Public Health advice is to base our meals around bread, pasta and rice. However some experts have challenged this advice, arguing that food high in carbs raises blood sugar, and increases the risk of diabetes.

Every study shows that sugar damages our health, the official guidance recommends 25g or 6 teaspoons a day. The British Nutrition Foundation advice is to eat the right amount of carbs, brown Rice, whole grains, flour, fruits and vegetables as well as whole grain cereals. These are filling and can contribute to long term weight loss. Which is sustainable.
Bottom line is carbs is good for us. Bad carbs are those found in food such as white rice, flour, sweets, pastries and cakes, classed as high GI. These causes the blood sugar to go up quickly, while low GI carbs (brown rice), causes a slower rise in blood sugar.

Fat.
Fat have always had a bad reputation, however not all fats are bad, some are good.

Fats have incredible anti aging powers and makes food tasty. Eating the right fats in the right amounts is the key to getting the most out of fats.

Bad fats:
These are classed as trans fats and saturated fats. Trans fats are found in a variety of products like cakes, biscuits, cereals bars, and some ready made meals. Trans fats can clog up the arteries which reduces the flow of blood and oxgyen around the body. Blockade can result in ageing of the arteries with an increased risk of heart diseases and stroke.

Saturated fats.
These fats comes from animal source, and can be found in full fats milk, sausages, burgers, pies, butter, pastries, biscuits.
These type of fats can raise the cholesterol  in the blood which increases the risk of heart disease and stroke.

Good fats
Fats also comes from plant and fish, these are classed as good fats. They provide the essential fatty acid needed by the body. The two main types are Omaega -6 and Omega-3 oils.

Good fats keeps the skin hydrated
Needed to keep the brain Ellis active
Increases energy, lack of this fat may make you feel low and depressed

Sources; these fats are found in a variety of food such as
Olive oils, nuts, (almond and walnuts), sesame seeds, salmon, mackerel sardines , fresh tuna and a host of other food groups.

It is important to note that fats are high in calories, and should be eaten in moderation.

Moderation is the key here. While we may be told to avoid certain food groups, the bottom line is that  they are needed.

Conclusion
We need the major food groups simply because they have different functions in our body. Eat the right food groups, do not exclude any as your body will turn on its reserve for what it needs. The more you avoid a food group the more you crave it. Protein, carbs and fats are all good for you.
Excessive consumption of any of food group will lead to weight gain and other health issues.

Please leave a comment and let us know if you have found this useful.

Other interesting article:
Understanding weight loss and weight gain
Lose 5Kg in 9 days

Sources; Public Health Advice. NHS, The British Nutrition Foundation.


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