Fat free products, are they really the better choice? Since most people are led to believe that fats are not good for you and you should better stay away from fat as a nutrient, many products are currently made and marketed as low-fat or fat-free. As such, they do not contain or are low in fats but are they truly that good for you?
Let’s begin with fats. Fat is the commonly used macronutrient along with carbohydrates and proteins. It is a necessary nutrient for your daily intake.
A common differentiation between fats is made between saturated and unsaturated fats. Saturated fats are often referred to as “bad” fats and unsaturated as “good” fats. Saturated fats can mainly be contained in processed meats and foods like cakes and biscuits, while unsaturated fats can, for instance, be found in nuts, seeds, vegetable oils, vegetables, e.g. avocado, fish, e.g. salmon. It is not possible to completely eliminate saturated fats from your diet since they are present in many products, e.g. full fat dairy products and meats. It is best to include both types of fats, though in moderation.
Your body is using fatty acids in the oxidative energy system. The amount of energy that your body can use from fats is significantly more than it takes from, for instance, glucose. Nevertheless, this is a slow process. But your body is unmistakenly using fat as a source of energy. Therefore, it is not good to completely refrain from taking in fats. Needless to say that this also has to be with some moderation. But taking in fats has less of a bad influence on your body than, for instance, sugar intake has. This leads us to the following part.
Additives in low-fat and fat-free products
Whenever you are checking the nutritional information on products that are low-fat or fat-free, you will notice that often there is sugar added. Pay attention, this is the case with 99% of those products, at least that is what I have seen. Feel free to check that for yourself as well. Note that sugars are likely to be complemented by all kinds of chemicals as well. But what is actually the danger of sugars?
Sugares are part of the earlier mentioned carbohydrates. It is a natural product and if consumed in moderation it is not that bad either. The only thing is that nowadays so many products contain sugars that our bodies get insulin insensitive. You get so many high insulin spikes every time you consume such products that your body can get insulin-insensitive from this overload. Having a high level of sugar in your blood, also referred to as blood glucose, for a long period of time can have its negative effects on the body and could even lead to diabetes.
What happens with excess fats and sugars?
When your body does not need carbohydrates, such as sugars, immediately after consuming them, your body will form tryglycerides through fatty acid synthesis and these will be stored in the fat tissue of your body. The excess of fat intake will be stored in the fat tissue as well.
So whenever you are consuming low-fat or fat-free products, you might deprive your body from essential fats and you will actually consume more sugar. The amount of sugar that your body does not need at the moment of consuming these products, will be stored as fat. On top of that, you also increase certain risks with having a high sugar intake. So it is best to stay away from low-fat and fat-free products and choose natural and unprocessed foods in a balanced diet.
What can you do next?
In my e-Book “The Essentials of Living Healthy”, I have covered a part on nutrition in general. Download your free copy here. Or you can opt for the programme where we will include nutritional advice and coaching alongside a training programme.
Start now, not tomorrow.