5 Healthy Fat Tips To Slash Inflammation And Boost Health

Did you know that healthy fats can fight inflammation?
Contrary to the American diet of the 1980s, and even up until a few years ago, eating a low-fat diet can actually cause you more problems than not. But all fats are not created equal!
The Standard American Diet (SAD), or diets that resemble it, is extremely high in the wrong types of fat: highly-saturated fats and refined oils. These types of fats have a negative effect on the inflammatory status of the body. Over time, this way of eating increases free radicals in the body and greatly increases risks of chronic inflammatory disorders such as arthritis, Alzheimer’s and cancer. Yikes! It’s no surprise that these disorders are on the rise with the influx of processed, unhealthy food options.
Even though it is becoming more en vogue to live a green lifestyle and choose healthier recipes, there is still some great confusion about which fats are healthy options — and decrease inflammation. Here is a breakdown to what fats supports the body, what fats breaks down the body, and what fats you should incorporate more into your diet. Let’s start slashing inflammation!
Just want the 5 tips? Scroll down to get them now…

The Omegas

Omega-3 and omega-6 are both essential fatty acids and are polyunsaturated fats. This means that they can not be produced by the body and need to come from our diet. The way our bodies respond to each is different and produces a massive difference in internal inflammation. 
Omega-3 fatty acids are vital. They help to reduce inflammation and increase your HDL cholesterol. EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) are two necessary dietary omega-3’s. You can find these abundant in wild caught salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring, oysters, and cod liver oil. There are plenty of vegetarian sources for omega-3’s, but they do not contain EPA and DHA. They are abundant in ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) — flaxseeds, chia seeds, avocado, algae, and walnuts.
Omega-6 fatty acids are also important for the body, especially because they also help to produce hormones. They do differ from omega-3’s and that’s important to know. They tend to increase inflammation, cell proliferation, and blood clotting. Eicosanoids, a type of omega-6 increases inflammation— the more of them, the more inflammation you might have. This is why it is so important to consciously eat more omega-3’s. We can easily get omega-6 fatty acids in our diet and if we are not counterbalancing them with foods that are anti-inflammatory, we could have big health problems.

The Good

Monounsaturated fat’s (MUFA) are quite important and considered a key player in healthy fat eating. It helps with weight loss, heart health, insulin control, and decreasing inflammation. One of the best MUFA is cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil. It is high in oleocanthal, known to be a powerful anti-inflammatory compound. If you aren’t into olive oil, here are a few other foods that are high in MUFA:
  • Almonds
  • Cashews
  • Pistachios
  • Olives
  • Peanuts
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Pork
  • Avocado
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Eggs
Curious to learn more about MUFA’s? Check out this website.

The Not So Good 

Refined vegetable oils and saturated fat’s are full of eicosanoids and are void of the anti-inflammatory, heart healthy benefits. These are abundant in processed and prepackaged foods and should be reduced or eliminated from your diet.

What about coconut oil? 

Coconut oil gets a bad reputation because of its high amount of saturated fat. Many in the medical field still consider all saturated fats to cause heart disease. But, not all saturated fats are created equal. Coconut oil has been linked to increasing HDL (good cholesterol), weight loss, increasing energy, promoting healthy skin, improving your immune system, and supporting proper functioning of the thyroid gland. Want to know more? Click here.

5 Key Points To Slashing Inflammation 

  1. Add in more omega-3’s to your daily eating plan. Opt for wild caught salmon, sardines, anchovies, or any of the other fish mentioned above. If you don’t do fish, look for hemp seeds, walnuts, avocado, flaxseeds, and chia seeds for more anti-inflammatory properties.
  2. Choose more monounsaturated fats from sources like avocados, nuts (see list above), olives, and eggs.
  3. Replace saturated fats that come from conventional fatty red meat, unskinned poultry, and dairy products; these products are high in saturated fats and have been linked to many inflammatory diseases. When eating these foods, choose pasture raised, organic meats and dairy and eat them in moderation.
  4. Reduce intake of refined polyunsaturated omega-6’s, such as sunflower, safflower, corn and soybean oil.
  5. Just say no to trans fats! These are found in most processed, pre-packaged junk food. You can also see them pop up in products such as margarine, vegetable shortening and any oil that is hydrogenated —partially or otherwise.

The key with boosting your healthy fat intake is to remember that eating fat is vital for a healthy, balanced body — if it is the right kind of fats. And, when choosing the right kind of fats, greatly decreasing inflammation will be a quite the reward. Even though inflammation is a very complex issue and food alone will not completely take care of the issue, it is an essential place to start. The more inflammation in the body, the greater our risk for disease and health complications. Consistently taking your dietary fat makeover one step at a time and building a solid foundation will allow you to quickly see great results!

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