Following up on the discussion on the Glycemic Index, here’s what I know about fats. Dr. Weil talks loads about fats in his book, Eating Well for Optimum Health, and he gives you lots of the chemical details behind what I’ll tell you.
Fats are an important part of a healthy diet. They help fight off the body’s hunger instincts. They are partially responsible for the shine of your hair, the suppleness of your skin. And boy did they get a bad rap somewhere in the 80’s.
All fats are not created equal. This is true. The best possible fats are monounsaturated fats, the kind found in olive oil and nuts (and yes, flaxseed oil). They are better because they are the lowest in cholesterol, and do the least to damage your heart and your arteries.
Margarine is NOT better. No matter how they slice it on the labels, it is still not better, unless you *only* look at calorie count. Trans fatty acids, for example, are a big component of margarine. The substances in margarine might likely be at the heart of several things, like liver damage, heart disease, maybe even cancer.
An optimum diet contains about 20% fat per meal. One way to get that is by cooking with olive oil. Another is to use walnuts in your dishes.
Fat does something really cool: it suppresses appetite. When your body’s ancient hunter-gatherer nature gets a taste of fats, it tends to think, “I’m doing all right. I don’t have to gorge on anything. Yep, no problems here.” And boy, that comes in handy when you’re eating a reduced calorie dietary plan. A few walnuts go a long way.
Okay, Jorge Cruise talks LOTS about flaxseed oil, how great it is, how yada yada. I am not a big fan, but only for these reasons: it’s really expensive, and it’s so delicate you have to treat it like a princess. What good is an oil I can’t cook with? For me? Not very. So, I skip it. The Omega-3 gain that flaxseeds gets you are equally present in walnuts, salmon and other fish of that nature, and that makes it fine by me to discount flaxseeds in any form in my life.