Dietary Fats

dietary, fat, oil, fish, avocado, nut, olive

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in nutrition to stay in shape. I read some advice from Arnold Schwarzenegger and I learned some good stuff.

Of the 3 macronutriments, fats are the nutrients that are the most dense in energy. Fat is composed of the same thing as carbohydrates (carbon, hydrogen and oxygen) but the difference is that the atoms are not linked together in the same way. Fat is in plants and animals. Oils are liquid fats. Fats are insoluble in water. Fats are organized in 3 categories:

  • Simple fats (triglycerides)
  • Compound fats (phospholipid, glucolipid, lipoprotein)
  • Derived fats (cholesterol)

Here are the 3 fat’s functions in your body:

  1. Fats are the main source of stored energy (body fat)
  2. Fats help to protect and cushion the major organs
  3. Fats have an insulator effect, preserving body heat and protecting against excessive cold.

Fat is the most dense nutrient in calories 1 pound (453gr) of fat contains 4000 calories while 1 pound (453gr) of protein or carbohydrate contains about 1800 calories.

When you do exercise and stay within your aerobic capacity, it means you don’t run out of breath, your body uses fats and carbohydrates as a source of energy at around 50/50. But if you continue, your body will use more fat than carbohydrates as a source of energy. If you train for 3 hours, your body can use fat to create 80% energy for your body.

As you could read, there is different type of fat: saturated, unsaturated and polyunsaturated. These terms mean the number of hydrogen atoms attached to the molecule. Here is an analogy with a string’s ball so that it’s easier to understand. Saturated fat is like a length of string in a messy clutter. Unsaturated is like a rope with some entanglements. And polyunsaturated is like a rope carefully wrapped without the sign of a tangle. The more fat is saturated (tangled), the more likely it’s to remain in the body and clog the arteries, which increase the risk of heart disease.

There are also other factors. Diets rich in saturated fat tend to increase cholesterol levels in the blood. Health experts advise that 2/3 of your fat intake is polyunsaturated fat.

Saturated fats are found in:

  • Beef
  • Lamb
  • Pork
  • Chicken
  • Shellfish
  • Egg yolks
  • Cream
  • Milk
  • Cheese
  • Butter
  • Vegetable shortening
  • Chocolate
  • Lard

Unsaturated fats are found in:

  • Avocados
  • Cashews
  • Olives and olive oil
  • Peanuts, peanuts oil, peanut butter

Polyunsaturated fats are found in:

  • Almonds
  • Cottonseed oil
  • Margarine (usually)
  • Pecans
  • Sunflower oil
  • Corn oil
  • Fish
  • Mayonnaise
  • Safflower oil
  • Soybean oil
  • Walnuts

Essential Fatty Acids

fatty, acid, saturated, unsaturated, monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, omega,3,6,9,linolenic, linoleic, cla, gla, arachidonic, epa, dha, oleic, lauric, myristic,palmitic, stearic

Essential fatty acids are inevitable in a healthy diet because your body can’t create it itself- That’s why it’s essential that you eat foods containing essential fatty acids. It’s a shame because many bodybuilders have low fat diets and they develop deficiencies in dietary fat. Fortunately there are foods and supplements that provide “good fats” to avoid this extreme. Here are some examples:

Fish oil

Instead of eating low-fat fish, test salmon, trout or mackerel. Fish oil is needed by organs, especially the brain. You can also take fish oils as supplements.

Polyunsaturated vegetable oil

In vegetable oils, there are 2 acids that are valuable: linoleic acid and linolenic acid. Supermarket oils such as corn oil, sunflower oil and safflower oil don’t contain linoleic acid. Soybean oil is the only supermarket oil containing linoleic acid but you need ot pay attention to GMO. For linolenic acid, you can find that in linseed oil, walnut oil, pumpkin seed oil.

Monounsaturated fatty acids

There are the most harmless fatty acids compared to some polyunsaturated fatty acids because they don’t affect your cholesterol or your prostaglandins (regulators of the hormones action). Monounsaturated fatty acids are found in olive oil and macadamia nuts.

Supplements of fatty acid

These supplements contain essential fatty acids from fish oils and other sources.

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-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here .

Cholesterol Demon Or Not

cholesterol angel demon

I read a Nerd Fitness article  and there is good stuff.

  • You have already heard you should avoid eating foods with cholesterol because they can clog your arteries. Only white egg, no egg yokes !

  • You have already heard if you want stay healthy you should reduce your cholesterol’s consumption. Margarine, no butter.

  • You have already heard you should reduce your meat’s consumption because meat has cholesterol. Meat can kill you !

If you’re like me, you heard all these arguments about cholesterol. 99 % of doctors advise us to reduce our cholesterol’s consumption when our cholesterol rate increase. All medias advice us to avoid cholesterol. Of course, we believe it.

In a PDF of nutrition for athletes, I discovered egg yolk benefits. After read this, I ask myself why everybody say cholesterol is bad ?

Attention I’m not a doctor or dietician, I did some research because I like to analyze (I’m a software writer) and I explain what I found. Use this article to discuss with your doctor about your diet. It will make me happy.

Cholesterol

cholesterol

Cholesterol is an organic lipid (fat) that exist in all animals and it is there to execute body functions. Cholesterol is produced naturally by the body and have a important part to keep us in alive. It is in each cells of our body.

A Harvard’s article  explains the 3 cholesterol’s mainly functions :

  • It helps make the outer coating of cells.

  • It makes up the bile acids that work to digest food in the intestine.

  • It allows the body to make Vitamin D and hormones (like estrogen in women and testosterone in men)

Seriously, these functions are really important ! Now to be sure than our body has enough cholesterol to manage all these functions, our liver create a lot of cholesterol each day.

Cholesterol is so important that our body produce more than 1000mg of cholesterol per day.

Now if our body produce a lot of cholesterol, what’s happen with the cholesterol we eat ? Add more cholesterol in our body can be bad ?

Not exactly, look these sentences of PubMed abstract   :

« Dietary cholesterol content does not significantly influence plasma cholesterol values, which are regulated by different genetic and nutritional factors that influence cholesterol absorption or synthesis ».

Translation : Cholesterol from food is poorly absorb by our body and rapidly excreted. It means that the amount of cholesterol you eat is very low than the amount of cholesterol in your blood stream.

And our liver regulate the level of cholesterol in the blood stream by increase or decrease cholesterol production.

Cholesterol angel or demon

cholesterol heart disease clog arteries

There is 3 type of lipoprotein associated with cholesterol. Usually your doctor talk about 2 types when you see him/her :

  • High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) : They’re billowy transporters that take cholesterol from your blood stream to deliver to your liver. Our liver use cholesterol to make bile. The majority of doctors say it’s good to have a lot of HDL. HDL is a good thing.

  • Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) : They’re also transporters. They take cholesterol from your liver and deliver cells. The majority of doctors say it’s good to have few. They’re bad cholesterol even if it’s more complex that that.

  • Very Low Density Lipoprotein (VLDL) : They were discovered recently. They have a lower density of lipoprotein than the LDL. The majority of doctors say it’s a priority to reduce the VLDL in our blood.

We just see that cholesterol is very important for body functions, we need it to survive. All cholesterol are not create equal but most of them are good and important !

Doctor

doctor

The story of hat for cholesterol is long and shitty. The medical community in the quest to minimize heart diseases had desperately need a scapegoat.

Long time ago, doctors discovered than cholesterol was one thing who clogged arteries. So they said that cholesterol was the cause and food with cholesterol should be avoid.

There is an example with Marks Daily Apple  :

« Tests in the fifties initially showed an association between early death by heart disease and fat deposits and lesions along artery walls. Because cholesterol was found to be present in those deposits (of course it would!) and because researchers had previously associated familial hypercholesterolaemia (hereditary high blood cholesterol) with heart disease, they concluded that cholesterol must be the culprit ».

So cholesterol is bad, case closed ! Unfortunately mommies are not agree with these doctors.

Go in the past in era of Tutankhamun and Cleopatra. In Ancient Egypt, they had same problems that we have today : heart disease and hardened arteries   !

It’s funny because some articles like this one  say that the only way for Egyptians to have a high cholesterol rate and clogged arteries is that they had a « fatty diet ».

Egyptians had a « fatty diet » ? They didn’t have fast-foods or supermarkets. Egyptians had a vegetarian diet . The cholesterol hypothesis is invalid !

Well, we’re beginning to see that the cholesterol is very more complex that we thought. Mmmmmh !

Conclusion

educate yourself

Cholesterol is not the root of the problem but just a risk factor among others. Take care about your cholesterol like you check your car’s oil level.

Cholesterol is a complex subject. Take a pill rather than change the lifestyle is not a solution. Before to decrease your consumption of cholesterol advised by your doctor, I encourage you to do your own research and have a conversation with your doctor to talk about these points and ask if change the lifestyle is a option.

Educate yourself rather than blindly follow someone’s advice even my advice. Question everything.

Do you have stories to share about improving health with a change in lifestyle or diet ?

 

-Steph

P.S : Do you want a free training program ? Click here