Tuesday: Phat Brain with Healthy Fats
Phat Brain with Healthy Fats
By: Tori O’Brien
It’s time to talk about fat (the closet hidden, buzz word of our current culture). It’s important that you know about fats, so that you don’t get fat, but you can be phat (this word means awesome!). The thing is there are three different kinds of fat:
1. Unsaturated Fats: Mono/polyunsaturated fats – theses help your body fight cardiovascular disease and enable proper brain development and function! GOOD!
2. Saturated Fats: unhealthy fat that comes mainly from animal products (meat and dairy) or from coconut and palm oils (the kinds used in processed foods). This can increase your bad cholesterol levels and risk for Type 2 Diabetes. BAD!
3. Trans Fats: this fat increases your risk for heart disease two fold – increasing bad cholesterol and getting rid of the good kind! It can also increase the inflammation in your body (ALERT: for those with arthritis, swelling, or learning challenges!!) WORST!
These are examples of BAD FATS!
As you can see the types of fats are NOT EQUAL! But, mono/polyunsaturated fats are important!! These fats are essential and need to be consumed (IN MODERATION) to make our brains function optimally and grow well throughout our years.
**Our Brains are made up of 60% fat and uses 20% of our body’s made energy. Wowzers! Fueling the brain with fat (the GOOD kind) is key to it working well and also for protecting it from diseases, not to mention monounsaturated fats can lead to an increase in production of a specific neurotransmitter that plays an important role in memory and learning.**
So what can you eat to get GOOD fats and help your brain out
- Salmon (or fish high in Omega 3s – google for a list)
- Avocado (yum! Tis the season for avocados right now – homemade guacamole or put some on toast with scrambled eggs)
- Nuts (oh I keep telling you about these – nuts are great – just remember portion size is key!)
- Whole Eggs (yappers – scramble them up, add some avocado and tomatoes – kicking meal anytime of day)
- Olive Oil/Cocount Oil (cook with these instead of another kind of oil – great flavor and a little goes a long way!)
The KEY is: eat whole, unprocessed food sources with these good natural fats and eat them in moderation! You’re brain will thank you and so will your tastebuds or and probably your doctors, too.
CLICK HERE for a cool article and further reading about research showing the effects of good and bad fats on the brain.