When dieting, high-fat foods are often seen as the enemy- to be avoided at all costs. But ditching more nutritious fats, like those in olive oil, avocados, nuts, and eggs, might not necessarily be the best way to shed the pounds. We’ve compiled 13 scientifically-backed reasons why certain fatty foods may be the unsung heroes of successful weight loss.
Fat Makes You Feel Full
Although that handful of cashews might look tiny compared to a salad bowl, the higher fat content of foods like nuts, cheese, hummus, and avocados can help you feel more satiated. Healthline explains that this feeling of fullness means you are less tempted to snack between meals, which helps with weight loss. Just don’t overdo it!
They Balance Your Hormones
According to the Women’s International Pharmacy, dietary fats play a vital role in hormone production and regulation, which impact your appetite, blood levels, and hormonal responses, including those related to metabolism. It sounds unbelievable, but burning fat might require eating some.
Fats Enhance Nutrient Uptake
Without fats, our bodies cannot effectively absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K from other foods, as described in Medical News Today. So, to get the most nutrition from the foods you eat and for maximum overall health, add some “good” fats to every meal.
They Stabilize Blood Sugar Levels
According to Eating Well, healthy fats, such as those in olive oil, nuts, and oily fish, help stabilize blood sugar levels. This avoids glucose dips and spikes, reducing your cravings for sugary snacks and ultimately helping you reach your diet goals.
When losing weight, preserving muscle mass is crucial because muscle tissue burns far more calories at rest than other tissue types. Dietary fats play a role in safeguarding muscular tissue, so including them in your diet can ensure you are “burning” calories at full throttle!
Fats Boost Your Metabolism
Certain fats, like those found in coconut oil, can provide a significant “boost” to your metabolism, which is your body’s ability to burn calories. The Chalkboard explains how this more efficient metabolic function can help dieters shed pounds more quickly.
They Reduce Your “Bad” Food Cravings
Not all fats were born equal! So-called “good” fats make you feel full while providing essential nutrients and health benefits, which can reduce the temptation to reach for more unhealthy alternatives like deep-fried, heavily salted, or high-sugar snacks.
They Provide Sustainable Energy
A study published in The National Library of Medicine showed that calorie-dense fatty foods like avocado satiated appetite much longer than high-carb options with equal calories. Eating at fewer times throughout the day requires aid in dieting by reducing the urge to overeat.
Eat Fats To Burn Fats
It might sound counterintuitive, but eating fats can stimulate fat oxidation, which is the mechanism by which your body burns fat molecules to make energy. Fitness experts at SteelFit recommend eating more healthy fats in order to burn more body fat while exercising.
Fats Add Flavor
Who says diet food has to be bland? Sticking to an extremely low-fat diet can lead to flavorless food, making any dieter feel deprived and unhappy after meals. Adding fats (in moderation) can enhance the taste of your cooking, making you more likely to stick to your goals.
They’re Mood Boosters
Fats support brain health and can help maintain a positive, stable mood. Healthline states that the healthy fats in foods such as nuts “may explain their beneficial effects on brain health.” This effect aids in maintaining motivation when trying to lose weight.
Hair and Skin
Polyunsaturated fats (like those in avocado) are essential in maintaining glowing skin and strong, shiny hair. While many dieters aim to shed pounds in order to boost their self-confidence and body image, eating some fats is vital if they truly want to look their best.
They’re Much Better Than Sugar
The New York Times suggested that the role of fats in obesity has been unfairly exaggerated by the sugar industry, with an over-emphasis on fats as the leading cause of weight gain. So try swapping those high-sugar sodas, cookies, and cake for eggs or grilled salmon.