Archive for the tag - low-fat

Myth: Low Fat Foods Are Healthy.

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERASkittles are a low-fat food. But if you eat a lot of skittles, I promise that you’ll still get fat.

Just because something is labeled “low fat” doesn’t mean it’s healthy. And conversely, not all foods containing fat are unhealthy.

Limiting trans and saturated fats is important. In fact, current dietary guidelines recommend that less than 7% of your total calories should come from saturated fat. But fat is just part of the equation.

When we talk about weight management, the formula is pretty simple. To maintain weight, you need to eat the same amount of calories that your body burns. To lose weight, you need to eat fewer calories than your body burns. With this in mind, it’s important to recognize that there are many unhealthy, calorie-dense foods with little or no fat. Like skittles.

Beyond saturated and trans fat, pay attention to carbohydrates. While complex carbohydrates are essential, many low fat foods are packed with simple carbohydrates including table sugar, corn syrup, fruit juice, white flour, etc.

Moreover, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and American Heart Association recommend no more than 2,300 mg of sodium each day, and no more than 1,500 mg for high risk groups. To add flavor, manufacturers often pump low fat or reduced fat foods with sodium – so read the nutrition label carefully.

Last but not least, remember that fat isn’t always a bad thing. Unsaturated fats – like those found in olive oils, nuts, avocados, etc. – are essential for proper bodily function.

Low-Carb Vs. Low-Fat Diet: Which Is Better?

What does it take to release weight and look more like this? A low-carb diet? A low-calorie diet? Turns out... either!

If you want to lose weight, you’re faced with the difficult decision of deciding which diet you’ll embrace. For most of us, there are mainly two types of diets: Diets that restrict carbohydrate intake (think Atkins) and diets that limit calorie/fat consumption.

There has been a lot of recent research on the effectiveness of both types of diets – and a number of studies have compared low-carb and low-fat dieters. One such multi-center study followed low-carb and low-fat dieters for two years. In addition to the dietary restrictions, dieters were given exercise routines and support. At the end of the study, both groups of dieters lost the same amount of weight: an average of 24.2 pounds. Moreover, for the most part, their health parameters were nearly identical.

Other studies have concluded similar findings. Both diets are very effective, especially when combined with exercise and support. So, it’s not really a matter of which diet works – it’s a matter of which diet works for you.

What foods can’t you live without? If pasta and bread come to mind, then low-carb diets probably aren’t sustainable or realistic. You’ll probably opt for a low-fat or low-calorie diet that limits portions of what you’re already eating. If you can’t give up that juicy steak, maybe a low-carb diet is a better approach. And if you can’t give up either the pasta or steak, you’re just screwed (just kidding – even low-carb diets allow for some carbohydrate intake. You can have pasta, just smaller portions and less frequently).

So, if you’re embarking on a weight loss journey, take some time to determine what diet works best for you. And since no two individuals are alike, the diet that works for you may be different than the diet that works for your partner, spouse or friend. It’s about finding a diet that feels sustainable and realistic for you.