The Fat Myth

Think fat makes you fat? Think again. Well, read this first. Then think again!

By Alexis Wolfer

There are few nutrition myths more prevalent than the one that says that fat makes you fat.

(For the record, I hate the word “fat.” It’s the ultimate F-word. And I would never use it to describe a body.)

But here’s the deal…

It seems like ever since the government’s food pyramid (now, plate… but really, who cares what shape it is, we’re still talking about a nutrition model influenced heavily by lobbyists pursuing their own agendas) waged a war on fat, 3 things have happened:

1. We’ve been brainwashed into believing that fat makes you fat,

2. The United States has dramatically decreased the amount of fat we consume in our diets, and

3.  The obesity epidemic has exploded.

Now, let me be clear here. I’m by no means saying that “low-fat” has lead to increased obesity. There are a lot of factors involved (including unrealistic body ideals that lead to eating disorders of all kinds, more sedentary work-lives, subsidies that cause prices of corn to plummet and organic fruits and vegetables to seem exorbinatly expensive in comparison – although that’s fodder for another post on the cost of a healthy diet versus the cost of diet-related diseases).

But there is one thing we do know for sure: fat does not make you fat.

Fat is not the enemy.

Eating fat keeps you full. It keeps your skin hydrated and youthful. It keeps you satisfied.

And all the crap being used instead of fat to make food taste good and increase it’s shelf-life: that’s the problem.

Our bodies know how to process naturally occurring fats. They don’t know how to process all the artificial stuff taking its place in an effort to make something (unnaturally) low-fat.

There is, however, a big difference in types of fats. Stick to fats found in whole foods, like nuts, seeds, avocados and olives and you have nothing to worry about. And stop reading those nutrition labels. It’s not the amount of fat you need to worry about (or the calories, for that matter). Stick to knowing the ingredients, listen to your body and feed yourself wholly. Your body and beauty will thank you. And you’ll never diet again.

Oh, and while you’re at it. Throw out that scale of yours too.