Fat is a necessary component of a normal diet, which provides energy and essential elements of cell membranes and associated nutrients such as vitamins A, D and E. One should keep their fat intake to 20-35% of their total energy expenditure. A 170 lb male athlete would consume about 20% of a 3,000 calorie diet in calories of fat. This equals 600 calories of good fats consumed.
Good fats include coconut oil and Omega-3, which actually promote fat burning. Remember that fat is not the enemy, and healthy fats should be consumed regularly as part of a balanced diet.
Eating an excess amount of fat will be stored as adipose tissue. This is especially true when eating an excessive amount of fat at the same time you are consuming sugar. The body will go to work metabolizing the sugar, but since it can’t use the fat for energy at that time, it will just store it. Think twice before you grab that next Caramel Macchiato, muffin or scone from your favorite coffee stand!
Diets low in fat are often high in sugar, artificially sweetened or high in sodium to make up for the lack of fat. This is a common misconception that can lead to unnecessary weight gain. Be a label reader and beware of claims that something is fat free or low fat.
Tips for good fat consumption:
- eliminate Trans fats from your diet
- limit saturated fat to 10% of overall calorie consumption for the day
- stick to mono and polyunsaturated fats
- stick to plant based fats: nuts, avocado, and olive oils