Sunday, February 8, 2009

February 2 - good news about fat

I have the opposite problem to most people when it comes to fat. I'm underweight and I struggle to put it on. I was doing a Google search for ideas to put on weight and was overwhelmed with the volume of bad news about fat and how to avoid it. I thought there had to be some good things about it so I typed in "10 good things about fat" and this is what came back -

"Fat has had a lot of bad press over the years and for many people, just a mention of the word can evoke misery or complaints about ones weight. You can try to lose it, try to hide it, try to avoid it, but your body still needs it! Did you know that fat helps to insulate our nerve cells, keeps us warm, balances our hormones, keeps skin and arteries supple, lubricates joints and is a component in every cell? The key issue here is recognizing which type of fat your body needs, how much your body requires and which type is your enemy. Armed with the right information, you can focus on getting more of the good fats and less of the bad fats into your daily diet.
There are two types of fat to be aware of. Saturated fats - let’s call them “the enemy” and unsaturated fats - “the good guys”! It is easy to tell the difference because saturated fats are hard at room temperature. Saturated fats are not essential to your health. They come from animals and are found in meat, eggs and cheese. They are harder to digest and full of cholesterol.
Unsaturated fats are liquid at room temperature and have been divided into two groups. Monounsaturated fats such as olive oil, and polyunsaturated fats such as sunflower oil.
Here are some important facts about fat in our diet.
1. Fat is the ‘energy reserve’ of animals, plants and humans.
2. The ideal body-fat ratio should be approximately 19-26% of a woman’s body weight, and 12-18% of a man’s body weight.
3. There are two different types of body fat - brown and yellow. Brown fat is situated inside the body and is ‘active’, containing mitochondria that produce heat (thermogenesis) and as a result burn energy. Yellow fat is found nearer the surface, is less active and more likely to accumulate. Women tend to have a higher ratio of yellow fat than men.
4. Women need higher levels of fat because it is essential for reproduction and so the body stores it ‘just in case’.
5. An average healthy intake of good fats in the diet should be approximately 30-40 grams a day. The fat content of diets in affluent populations can be nearly four times this amount!
6. Most foods containing fat combine saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat in varying quantities. For instance, butter’s fat content is almost 100%, of which 60% is saturated, 30% monounsaturated and 10% polyunsaturated, compared with sunflower seeds’ fat content of 73%, of which just 12% is saturated and 21% monounsaturated and 67% is polyunsaturated.
7. Heat, light and oxygen destroy essential fatty acids, which is why it is best to keep oils in dark containers.
8. Essential fats must come from the diet because your body cannot produce them. The essential healthy fats are Omega 3 and Omega 6 (known as essential fatty acids).
9. Weight for weight, fat provides more than twice the amount of usable energy than carbohydrates or protein (you’ll find 9 calories in every gram of fat).
10. Fat contributes to the palatability, texture and the smell of many foods, it also slows down the process of digestion providing an extended period of satiation after a meal.
When you know the good from the bad, fat is fabulous!"
(This came from a blog at
So now I don't have to feel bad about wanting to eat good fat to, maybe, put on some much needed weight.
I based this page on the look of notes pinned on a corkboard. The notes about fat are written on two separate post it notes and overlapped so from this photo you can't read the full story. I like the effect of using a page printed as a cork board for the base. There's more on the lower half of the corkboard as the whole page covers 2 days. if you look at the next entry on nuts and washers you'll see the bottom of this page.

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