Last Wednesday, we talked about the benefits of good fats. But what are the good fats? Are there fats to avoid?
Fats can be broken down into 3 categories:
Unsaturated – Often liquid at room temperature
Found in olive oil, avocados, nuts/seeds & nut butters, flax meal, chia seeds, and fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, trout, mackerel, sardines and herring.
You have probably heard that you should be sure to get your omega-3s! These are an unsaturated fat. If you take an omega-3 supplement, make sure you are taking a high-quality one. Many come from fish that have been taken from contaminated water, thus containing heavy metals. I love this one.
Saturated – Solid at room temperature
Found in animal products including full-fat dairy.
Also found in coconut oil as a medium chain fatty acids (MCFA) which are more easily digested and have been shown to actually help stimulate your body’s metabolism, leading to weight loss.
Trans-fats – Partially hydrogenated oils
Manufacturers send saturated fats through a chemical process to create a substance that gives processed foods a longer shelf-life. This produces a highly toxic, inflammatory substance.
Found in processed foods. The product can claim it is free of trans fats if it has less than 0.5 per serving, but if you see hydrogenated oil on the ingredient list – STEP AWAY.
My favorite fats: nuts/seeds and nut butters (right now almond butter & cashews are my faves), avocados, and coconut oil/olive oil.
How do I eat them? Usually nuts/seeds with breakfasts and snacks or in the form of cashew sauce, coconut oil for baking, olive oil for dressings, and avocados in guacamole or on salads.
As I type the date for today, I realized that it has been 12 years since I ran my first full marathon. Already having a half-marathon under my belt, I took a marathon training class as an elective during Pharmacy School at Purdue. I didn’t know how to properly fuel during my run so it wasn’t the best! I can’t really say I have the desire to ever run a full-marathon again. I do love the 1/2 marathon distance and plan to stick with that for now!
We will have a super busy week, so the meal plan reflects that.
I am a recovering fat phobe. You would open my fridge or pantry and find fat-free, low-fat everything. I still look at things like nuts and avocados and think, “Wow, that has a lot of fat.” But I know that the right kind of fats, in the right amounts are actually good for me and I make a conscious decision to eat them!
Why? Because of all of the benefits:
Brain health – A significant amount of your brain is actually made of fat! It is especially important for children to get enough healthy fats to promote brain development. In addition to yummy nuts and avocados, my girls take this high-quality Omega supplement.
Pregnancy – Again, the developing baby needs good fats!
Joint health – EPA and DHA (Essential fatty acids) have been studied for many different joint conditions and can promote joint mobility and flexibility. They may also help to reduce stiffness, swelling, and pain.
Skin – Essential Fatty Acids are important building blocks for cell membranes.
Absorption of Fat-Soluble Vitamins (A, D, E, K) – Some vitamins must have fat to dissolve so they can be used by your body. This is why it is important to include a little bit of olive oil with your vinegar on that salad!
Weight loss – More recent studies have shown that a little bit of healthy fats in the diet help to burn fat!
Want a fun way to incorporate some healthy fat into your kids’ diet? Try this avocado pudding! We just do cocoa powder to cut down on the sugar content. Sometimes I extra almond milk and make them into popsicles!
Last week we jumped right back into the swing of things after vacation! Usually we have a couple of rough days of school after returning from vacation, but not this time! Woohoo! Maybe because they are getting older?
One of our homeschool co-ops has just 2 more weeks left which means Presentation Night is just 2 weeks away. I co-teach a Choir class and a Drama class that will perform at Presentation night. My girls are in both classes. Presentation Night is always fun! Plus Grandma and Grandpa usually come. They’re pretty awesome!
Spring has arrived!
On the meal plan this week:
Sunday – Big salads topped with portabellas and hard boiled eggs & baked potatoes (keepin’ it simple – we have a piano recital between worship services)
We spent last week in Williamsburg, VA! Our little family treasures our vacations. It doesn’t so much matter where we go, but just that we get to take the time to recharge together.It’s a time to spend talking, playing, singing, and just being silly together. You may say… “But you homeschool – you’re with your kids all the time.”
While that is true…
Dad works long hours, so adding him to the mix is always fun. He’s a hoot.
It gives Mom a chance to relax and be silly too. 🙂