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The Case for Full-Fats

If you always look for low-fat or fat-free on food labels, it’s time to rethink your strategy. That’s because full-fat foods can ease your cravings, keep you healthy, and help you shed pounds.

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The Case for Full-Fats

Written by Dr. Kellyann Petrucci

You head to the grocery store and scrutinize the dairy section. Two percent milk, fat-free milk, whole milk: So many choices, so little time. So since you’re trying to lose weight, you feel virtuous as you opt for the fat-free version, right? Wrong.

The most recent studies show that full-fat foods such as butter, coconut fats and oils, and avocados satisfy your hunger. As a result, you eat less food naturally and lose weight without those killer cravings.

Moreover, vitamins A and D are fat-soluble. That means your body needs fat to absorb those nutrients. By choosing fat-free versions,  rather than full-fat,  you’re depriving yourself of important vitamins.

In addition, many of those reduced fat products such as fat-free cheese contain sugar, cornstarch and similar substitutes linked to conditions ranging from diabetes to metabolic syndrome.  So does this mean that you rush out and fill your refrigerator full of full-fat yogurt, cheddar cheese, cream cheese and milk? Not exactly.

Follow these guidelines for health and weight loss success:

  • If you buy dairy products, (which I cannot touch, however I have patients who can tolerate small amounts) choose full-fat rather than fat-free or skim. This will guarantee you get the nutrients and that it will be non-processed. This is an important tip for kids as well.
  • Look for grass-fed options, such as grass-fed butter.
  • Choose foods without added ingredients, such as plain whole milk Greek yogurt rather than the sugary fruit variety.

If milk is on the menu: a note about organic: Washington State University researcher Dr. Charles Benbrook conducted a study of approximately 400 samples of organic and conventional milk. During the 18 months of his study, he discovered that:

  • Organic milk contains higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids than other types.
  • Whole milk is higher in omega-3s than fat-free or low-fat milk.

What about heart disease and cancer? The most recent studies show no link between saturated fat and heart disease or high cholesterol. In fact, the research points to sugar and carbohydrates such as bread and pasta as the culprits for conditions ranging from high cholesterol to diabetes to colon cancer.

A low carb diet, in contrast, with full-fat dairy, meat, poultry, fish, avocado, nuts, olive oil and vegetables, reduces your risk of certain types of cancer and diabetes while accelerating weight loss.

Nutritional tip: Full-fats are unprocessed fats, which will always serve you better. There’s just too much research now showing us that full-fats do not cause heart disease. It’s the poor quality oils, refined carbohydrates and processed foods that get you in trouble. So, when you think fats, think skinny. Think healthy. Think energy. That’s what you’ll find with full-fats.

Keep thinking big and living bold!

-Dr. Kellyann

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