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Long ago, fats were considered not only something that could destroy a diet, but could also contribute to cardiovascular disease to diabetes
. After many years of research, we now look as fats as a necessary item. While there are some fats that are bad, they are not all created equal. Below are five myths and facts about fats.
1. Myth: All fats are equal—and equally bad for you.
Fact: Saturated fats and trans fats are bad for you because they raise your cholesterol and increase your risk for heart disease. But monounsaturated fats
and polyunsaturated fats are good for you, lowering cholesterol and reducing your risk of heart disease.
2. Myth: Fat-free means healthy.
Fact: A fat-free label doesn’t mean you can eat all you want without consequences to your waistline. Many fat-free foods are high in sugar, refined carbohydrates and calories.
3. Myth: Eating a low-fat diet is the key to weight loss.
Fact: The obesity rate for Americans
has doubled in the last 20 years, coinciding with the low-fat revolution. Cutting calories is the key to weight loss, and since fats are filling, they can help curb overeating.
4. Myth: All body fat is the same.
Fact: Where you carry your fat matters. The health risks are greater if you tend to carry your weight around your abdomen versus your hips and thighs. A lot of belly fat is stored deep below the skin surrounding the abdominal organs and liver, and is closely linked to insulin resistance and diabetes.
5. Myth: There is no “superfat” for the brain and heart.
Fact: Especially beneficial are Omega-3 fatty acids, a type of polyunsaturated fat. Research has shown that they can: reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, and cancer; protect against memory loss and dementia; ease joint pain and inflammatory skin conditions; and support a healthy pregnancy.
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