The Low-Fat Fiasco and Why It’s Bad for your Waistline
When you hear “low-fat,” you often associate the phrase with being healthy. Well, that’s probably not the case. It is finally starting to hit mainstream knowledge that the low-fat lifestyle didn’t work. Call it an experiment with nutrition guidelines that failed miserably.
The message was supposed to be about eating more fruits, vegetables and low-fat meats (all of which are healthy)…..but that isn’t what happened. During this time, the food industry caught on to “low-fat” and replaced fat with highly refined carbohydrates and sugars. Our bodies process these differently and they change our metabolism. It causes our brain to think it is starving and depleted of vital fats, which leads to constant cravings and hunger.
Think about it….when we eat carbohydrates (starches, sugars, breads and pasta), we can just eat and eat them – never really feel full and a few hours later we are hungry again. This is the metabolic cycle that has changed our waistlines during the last 40 years and has resulted in a nation that does not have a single state with less than 20 percent of its citizens being obese. Since low-fat living was first recommended, obesity has increased an astounding 50 percent and diabetes has risen by an astonishing 66 percent! Americans are sicker and carrying more weight around their waistlines than any other time in history.
Studies now show there is not a strong link between dietary fats (red meat, eggs and whole fat dairy) and heart disease. But studies have shown a VERY strong link between added sugar in the diet and cardiovascular mortality=death. Such a strong link was found that guidelines to limit added sugar in the diet were recommended right after the study came out!
Bottom line – eating fat doesn’t make you fat, eating too many refined sugars and carbohydrates does. Those calories add up and more importantly cause a change in our metabolism….and not for the better. And low-fat doesn’t always mean bad but it does mean choosing healthy “low-fat” items such as proteins, fruits, vegetables and using healthy vital dietary fats such as olive oil.
The difficulty now is people have been told for 40 years that fat is bad. Changing people’s minds and perceptions is the hard part. There are now two generations, including doctors, with the belief that a low-fat diet is good for you. Like any change, it is going to take some time for this to change but slowly it is starting to happen.