Paleo Fats: Understanding Which Fats Are Healthy And Which Ones To Avoid
Fats is a subject many healthy dieters never seem to fully understand.
It’s confusing, and understandably so.
We’ve been told a different story about fats from “experts” over the years, and that has lead to many misconceptions about this macro nutrient.
We then say things like:
How much fat should I eat?
I can’t eat saturated fats because it raises cholesterol!
And my favorite, will eating fat make me fat?
I will clear up any confusion with the above in this article.
But more importantly, I will give you a clear understanding of which fats are healthy for you and which ones you should avoid.
Just How Much Fat Do I need To Eat?
I want to begin by saying this: On the Paleo diet, most of your daily calorie intake should be from fats.
Many people aim for 50-70%. To find out what is optimal for you, you will need to experiment.
tip: Experimenting is easy. If you find you don’t have as much energy as you’d like throughout the day, consume more fat – and vice versa.
The optimal amount will be different from person to person.
Consuming most of my calories from fat? That sound crazy! If that’s what’s going through your mind, I don’t disagree. That’s what I thought too, initially.
I see where you’re coming from, because conventional diets that are heavy on carbohydrates like grains and cereals tell you to get your energy from carbs.
So it’s a bit of a shocker when you hear about how much fat you should be consuming on the Paleo diet.
just remember, your primary source of energy will be fats, not carbohydrates.
And no, eating fat will not make you fat. Well, only if you eat the good fats, which I’ll discuss a little later.
So Which Fats Are Good For Me And Which Ones Are Bad?
This is the meat and potatoes of the article. It’s where the money is.
Instead of getting into the nitty gritty nutritional woo ha of fats, I’ll simply leave you with fats you need to be consuming and fats you must avoid.
The Good Fats:
Butter & Ghee
Technically, butter is not Paleo. It didn’t exist in paleolithic times. But it is fantastic for cooking and tastes awesome.
tip: If you eat butter, don’t go for the conventional store bought stuff. Find butter that came from organic grass-fed animals. The fat is more nutritious and healthier for you.
Ghee (clarified butter) is butter with the milk parts removed. Ghee is a great choice if you are sensitive to dairy or if you are more strict with your Paleo dieting.
Both butter and ghee is high in saturated fats and healthy for you.
Animal fats are another way to get your daily fat intake. Whether it be ground beef, bacon, or chicken skin, this fat will give you energy and promote healthy functioning of your body.
Try your best to purchase grass-fed animals and/or organic meats. It will be more expensive, but the health of these animals are far superior than regular ones. You’ll benefit more in the end.
Lard & Tallow:
Lard is fat rendered from pork, and tallow is fat rendered from beef. From reading above, you know that animal fats are good for you. The reason why you would want to use lard and/or tallow is because it comes in a jar and has a shelf life. And it’s awesome to cook with!
This is a list of good oils to use:
Coconut oil, olive oil, avocado oil, flaxseed oil, nut oils (walnut, pecan, macadamia).
Stick with the oils above for your cooking and salads and you won’t go wrong.
tip: for cooking, coconut oil is king! It has a high burn temperature and is extremely healthy.
tip2: for salads, olive oil and avocado oil are kings. Be generous while you drizzle.
Nuts & Seeds:
Healthy nuts like pecans, walnuts and macadamia nuts have good levels of omega-3. These make great snacks. Move over chips!
The Bad Fats!
What are bad fats? It pretty much come down to anything high in omega-6 fatty acids, polyunsaturated fats, or anything that was man-made. There is more to it than just that, but perhaps that will be another article.
All you need to know is: Avoid the following fats
Margarine, man-made oils (hydrogenated & partially hydrogenated oils), canola oil, corn oil, vegetable oil, soybean oil, grape seed oil, safflower oil, peanut oil, and sunflower oil.
This isn’t an exhaustive list of fats to avoid, but it includes the big ones.
Just focus on the “good oils” above and you won’t even have to worry about consuming the bad ones.
So I hope you have a better understanding of fats now.
More importantly, you should have a better understanding of which fats to use in your cooking.
Workout of the day
Skill: Clean high pull
10 Rounds for Time:
1 Power Clean 225/145
10 Wallballs 20/14
5 Toes to bar
[15 Minute Cap]