Saturday, March 15, 2008

Get Energy from Good Fats

I was referred by a good friend who is a Holistic Veterinarian to This website has great information and products to improve our health. The one item Ialways take daily is their vitamin B-12 and I feel it really works! Here is a little bit of Tivitas newsletter.

The inside scoop on calories and fats Do you know what a calorie is? It's a measurement of energy. More specifically, it's the amount of potential energy stored in any food we eat. Generally speaking, both protein and carbohydrate foods each contain about four calories per gram. Fats, in comparison, have more than twice the calories and twice the potential energy per gram (note: 28.3 grams=1 ounce). So for long-term energy and stamina, think fats!

Small snacks with powerhouse fats
English walnuts - It takes about 100 calories of energy for me to walk a mile, and about 130 calories to run one mile. A one-ounce serving of English walnuts (about 7 pieces) provides 180 calories of energy - that's enough fat energy for me to walk nearly two miles or to run 1¼ miles! Plus, walnuts are very high in Omega-3 fats.

Avocado - It takes about 250 calories of energy for me to ride a stationary bicycle for 30 minutes (average speed 10 mph). That's about the amount of energy in a small avocado, a very delicious fruit containing high levels of beneficial fats.

Green olives - It takes about 140 calories for me to swim 20 laps in the pool. That's about the same amount of energy found in a small serving of green olives (my favorites!). The olive oil is beneficial for your heart and brain, as well as serving as a natural antibiotic. It is one of the most healthful oils for your body and like other sources of fat, it's filled with lots of potential energy.

Calories in, calories out
For any single day, whenever you don't use up all the food energy you consume, the excess energy is stored in fat cells as triglycerides. In other words, you gain fat. Conversely, whenever you use up more energy in a day than you consume, that deficit will likely be taken from fat stored in fat cells (the exception to this is when you are under severe stress). Here, you'll lose fat, which is a very good thing for most North Americans.

The good, the bad and the uglyFats contain more than twice as much potential energy as protein and carbohydrates. For instance, Omega 3 fats are absolutely vital for your brain and heart - so much so that a neurologist said that "Omega-3 is to the brain what calcium is to the bones." Some sound advice: eat small portions of good fats every day and eat more fat when you need more energy - for instance, on a long hike.

Certain good fats are not found in the diets of people in developed countries. Or, at the very least, they are not eaten with the same regularity as they were in past times. If we do not have enough good fats in our diet, our health will suffer in many ways. The internal organs and hormones made up from these fats will not function correctly. Our brain will literally shrink without good fats. We will have blood sugar and hormone imbalances. We may even have a heart attack without enough good fats. Therefore, it's important that we select a good balance of fats in our diet and also include a high quality, Omega essential fatty acid supplement. Omega-3 supplements are perhaps the most important supplement we can take.

Some fats are inherently bad. No matter what foods they're found in they are always bad for you. Both trans-fats and hydrogenated fats fall into this category. Never eat them. Fortunately, neither of these fats occur in nature. So, as long as you are eating whole foods that have not been processed or over-cooked, you are unlikely to be poisoned by these bad fats.

Finally, as with all foods, you can over-consume even the good fats - it's like getting too much of a good thing. This is the ugly side of dietary fats. High fat foods provide a lot of energy. If you do not plan to burn off that energy, be sure to eat very little of these foods. Otherwise, unused stores of excess energy will appear in ugly places!

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