If you read this recent New York Times article about the sugar industry shifting the blame to fat, then you know that not ALL fats are created equal (just as not all sugars are created equal). Unfortunately, our culture has given the word fat a bad rap.
Don’t get us wrong, Trans and Saturated Fats are bad, but Monounsaturated and Polyunsaturated Fats are more than good for your body, they’re actually necessary for good health (spoiler alert: it’s not the kind in french fries).
20%-30% of your daily calories should be good fat to fuel your body and keep your skin healthy. There are 9 calories in every 1 gram of fat and to calculate, multiple your daily calorie intake by .2 and/or .3 to find the answer.
Example: If you eat 2,000 calories per day, 2000 X .2 = 400 Fat Calories per day.
So, what kind of fat should those 400 calories come from?
- Plants provide a healthy dose of good fat such as avocados, almonds, sesame seeds and olives.
- Omega-3s are a leading reason the American Heart Association suggests 2 servings of fatty fish per week such as salmon.
- Room temperature oils such as olive, coconut or avocado.
- Butter or Ghee contain fat-soluble vitamins, fatty acids and are ideal for cooking as they don’t lose their properties with high heat.
If you replace the bad fats with good fats and minimize it to only 20%-30% of your daily calorie count, your body would thank you (probably in more ways than one).
If you and your family are sad to say goodbye to your Kettle Chips or deep fried favorites, get creative with some alternatives like, homemade popcorn with coconut oil, kale chips or baked sweet potato “fries.”
Does your family have a love affair with butter in baked goods that exceeds daily intake limit? Or worse, do you use traditional shortening? Make warm banana bread that uses applesauce instead of butter (and use a natural sweetener like honey or maple syrup instead of sugar). Also, try palm oil as a flakey texture-producing substitute.
Coconut oil is a great go-to as well. From pan frying and sautéing, to using it in your coffee instead of creamer. It is a great substitute in recipes that call for vegetable oil. It’s vast variety for uses make this a great way to get your daily good fat in!
The more often you make these slight variations, the easier it will be to cut the cords connected to bad fat.
Check out our downloadable kids' activity sheet below! :)