Our culture has had a love-hate relationship with fats for quite a long time. Recently, thanks to the ketogenic diet and other research surfacing, most active individuals are aware that some types of fats comprise an important macronutrient. It’s likely one of the most underrated elements of diet, as protein and carbs get the most ink. However, knowing how to use fats to their utmost potential for both general health and physique development is a utility that can produce surprising results if you have yet to take advantage of it. Here are a few helpful principles to learn about dietary fat-
Most people looking for muscular development become disciplined in accounting for protein, carbohydrates, and some micronutrients through vegetable sources. When dieting, especially with the goal of fat loss, most individuals avoid the foods which are the most common providers of fat- dairy, butters, fried foods, and other various cheat meals. Upon starting a strict program, they are removing a major macronutrient without accounting for a healthier replacement. Some of the most common causes for hormonal issues, strong cravings, and feeling generally miserable during a strict diet program, is the avoidance of dietary fat, or a deficiency thereof. Dieting is not only more user friendly and enjoyable, but more effective when proper fats are employed. The physical changes your hoping to see will take effect more easily when adequate fat is included… and you may not even need to feel like you starved yourself to get there!
It’s true that fats can be one of the most harmful or beneficial things to consume. Possibly one of the reasons why our culture has historically been so hot and cold in our opinion of fat is because there are both helpful and detrimental types available, and each has a resounding respective effect. Your buddy who just lost 40 pounds on the keto diet and eats bacon all day? Probably could have lost 70 and had less damage control to take care of in post had he relied on healthier fat sources. Bad oils which don’t have a proper heat tolerance, such as soybean oil, vegetable oils, margarine and processed peanut butter, are among the worst things you can eat in terms of system damage. They burden the body with digestive, immune, and hormonal issues, and unfortunately are present in every popular fast food joint…. ever ready to push your goals further away. On the other hand, organic ghee, extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, cod liver oil, avocados, raw cacao butter, pumpkin seeds, almonds, macadamia and walnuts, are just some of the most advantageous foods to include in your diet regardless of your goal. Underrated and largely undiscovered, it’s worth looking into which fats are healthy. Not all fats are created equal... know which ones are worthy to enter your body and see to it that they they do.
If you’ve looked into the ketogenic diet, you have heard people swearing by it for weight loss. However, you don’t have to cut out all carbs to experience the benefit of ketogenic principles if applied correctly. Whether you are trying to bulk or cut, adding/increasing healthy fats in your routine will give you unexpectedly great results. For starters, taking this step is essentially adding back a missing ⅓ of your macronutrient intake. Good fats like the ones mentioned above signal the body that there is an adequate amount of fat nutrients coming in on a regular basis. Your body loves to both burn fat as fuel, and use it as a catalyst in metabolic reactions needed to boost your vitality and vibrance. Although calorically dense, missing dietary fat when re-instituted will decrease the amount of body fat your system feels it needs to retain. Not to mention it will also add weeks onto the length of time you can keep your sanity when eating clean, as it is helping you to feel satisfied and fuller. It makes going through a cutting diet phase infinitely more sustainable, while also decreasing the potential of muscle atrophy due to lacking nutrients. Your mind won’t be occupied pushing you to cheat on your diet, making you crave ice cream, pizza, burgers and fried food- by the way - all of which are vehicles for huge amounts of fats in small amounts of volume. Ever wondered why those are the foods you crave during a diet? Now you know. Did you realIze that fats are also essential for the production of needed hormones? Becoming deficient will create an unneeded kink in your testosterone/hormones. Healthy fats help nourish your endocrine system in a way that will boost testosterone and other needed hormones naturally. If you are trying to eat clean and not getting adequate fat, be assured your systems responsible for proper muscle growth, testosterone, recovery, proper rest, good mood, and general happiness, are not being given the main tool they need to do their job. Balance your carbs and fats properly… and get ready for a sick pump! Fats make a legit “clean bulk” possible and they make cutting much more liveable and will get you lean even faster.
Start by limiting dairy and cheat foods, and completely stay away from fried foods and bad oils. Replace them with good fats, and make them a regular part of your daily intake. Start with 2 tablespoons of coconut oil or olive oil mixed with organic juice of your choice first thing in the am, and include other healthy sources through the day. It may start out looking like more than you would need, but give it time. You will intuitively feel results immediately and not long after you will see them in the mirror. Experiment with different foods and intake amounts so that fats make up 23-30% of your calories. The most efficient ones to start with are ghee, coconut and extra virgin olive oil. Try these principles out, your body will love them and you will too.
Once you learn to utilize fats properly, they will become a tool you never understood how you could have went without. Bulking, cutting, or any other performance goal will become less difficult to obtain, and the journey there will be less depriving and strenuous. Your mood will elevate and your mental clarity will come to be a regular pleasantry. You will find it is much easier to avoid bad fats and incorporate good ones if you meal prep as close to 100% of your daily intake. Here are a few simple lists below.
EV Olive Oil
Ghee Organic grass fed butter
Omega 3 cod liver oil
Raw Cacao Butter
Organic Almond Butter
Grass fed beef fat (hormone/antibiotic free)
Grape seed oil
Bacon (nitrate free)
Saturated fat from grass fed/healthy animals
Read your ingredient labels thoroughly and ask your waiter/server about the process to make sure these don’t slip into your diet accidentally-
Deep fried foods
Reheated frying oil (any and all fast food)