Did you know that fat is an essential nutrient that your body needs on a daily basis?
In fact, without enough (good) fat in your diet, your risk for developing major illness such as heart disease, blood vessel disease and atherosclerosis significantly increases.
But here’s the thing, all fats are not created equal.
The right fats (also known as essential fats because your body can not produce them on its own), will support your weight loss goals, improve your energy, make you look younger and support healthy cholesterol levels and a healthy, strong heart.
On the other hand, consuming the wrong fats can lead to a slow metabolism, a lack of energy, overall poor health and even worse, heart disease and even cancer.
The 5 foods listed below all contain healthy fats which will boost your health by increasing your HDL (good) cholesterol, decreasing your bad cholesterol and improving your energy, your looks and even your mood.
Healthy Fat Food #1: Salmon (Wild)
Without a doubt, wild caught Salmon is on of the best and highest sources of heart healthy omega 3’s. Salmon is loaded with DHA and EPA, which have been shown is studies to have a direct impact on increasing good cholesterol and decreasing bad cholesterol.
EPA and DHA have also been shown to improve symptoms of inflammatory disorders such as arthritis and Crohn’s disease.
In addition to its’ excellent omega 3 content, wild salmon is also an excellent source of high quality protein, Vitamin D, Vitamin B6, Vitamin E and Vitamin A.
But, stay away from farmed Salmon.
Thanks to modern fish farming practices, farmed salmon has nowhere near the amount of omega 3’s found in wild caught salmon.
Salmon farmers use dangerous antibiotics and chemicals to keep the farmed fish healthy in overcrowded fish pens where disease spreads quickly. Farmed salmon is also fed an unnatural diet of fish meal consisting of GMO soy and animal by-products, which dramatically reduces the omega 3 content of farmed salmon.
Eat wild salmon at least twice a week. Avoid frying it in oil. Instead, bake it in the oven and eat it with a side of fibrous veggies such as broccoli, spinach, cauliflower, green beans or a leafy dark green salad.
Healthy Fat Food #2: Walnuts
Walnuts contain a high amount of ALA, another essential fat that your body can’t produce on its own. Walnuts are also a great source of fiber, Vitamin E, protein, Iron, Magnesium and vitamin B6.
Eat a small handful of walnuts several times a week for optimal health benefits.
Walnuts are great to eat all on their own and are a great appetite suppressant.
I like to snack on a handful of walnuts with a piece of fruit in between meals and at times where I may not have something healthy to eat (such as before going to a restaurant, an event etc… ) to reduce my appetite and eliminate bad food cravings.
Healthy Fat Food #3: Eggs (Organic & Cage Free)
Eggs have gotten a bad rap recently because studies have shown that egg consumption increases your cholesterol levels.
That being said, higher cholesterol levels are NOT dangerous if you are healthy and have no heart conditions.
You see, Eggs increase your LDL (bad cholesterol), but they also increase your HDL good cholesterol at the same time.
No study has ever shown that high cholesterol levels cause heart disease. But rather, a diet high in sugar, processed foods, omega 6 vegetable oils and trans fats (found in french fries, margarine, canola oil,soybean oil and other cheap oils) are the main culprits in the heart disease epidemic.
That’s because those foods all lead to inflammation of the artery walls, which is the main trigger for heart disease.
If you are eating a diet made up of mostly whole foods and you are staying away from processed foods, white flour, sugar, vegetable and hydrogenated oils, your health will not deteriorate from eating one, two, or even three whole eggs several times a week.
Eggs are an excellent source of protein and B vitamins, as well as brain and memory boosting Choline.
Avoid cooking your eggs in vegetable oil. Instead, boil them or fry them in small amounts of our next healthy fat food…
Healthy Fat Food #4: Olive oil
Olive oil is high in monounsaturated fatty acids which have been shown to reduce inflammation in a similar fashion to the non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs Tylenol and Advil.
But unlike drugs, olive oil has no side effects and is derived from nature, not made in some lab by scientists wearing lab coats.
Just goes to show you that mother nature has the answers to even the most debilitating diseases and health problems.
All in all, olive oil is an excellent health food, but it is high in calories, so you have to limit your consumption especially if you’re trying to lose weight.
If you are experiencing slight to moderate joint or muscle pain, start cooking with olive oil and you just may find yourself not needing those over the counter pain medications.
Healthy Fat Food #5: Avocados
Avocados are one of my favorite foods because just like olive oil, avocados are high in health boosting monounsaturated fats. They are also an awesome source of fiber and potassium.
In fact, one avocado contains twice the amount of potassium of a banana!
Slice up an avocado into your next salad, or make guacamole out of it.
Eat these 5 foods on a daily basis and get ready to reap all of the benefits of a diet high in healthy, natural fats.