The Nine Rules of Fat
by Jonathan Carp, MD. Founder and CEO of Miracle Noodle
People have been reducing or cutting fat out of their diet, thinking that this actually makes
them fat. But this is not the case. The fact is fat is not a bad addition to your diet if it's chosen properly, correctly, purely.
In this blog, you're going to understand everything you need to know to make the right
decisions about fat in your diet. Here are the 9 rules of fat to take note of:
Rule #1: Fat helps you absorb nutrients from plants.
When you're eating a salad, it's important that you have some kind of fat whether that's from
sprinkling some raw nuts on your salad or having a little bit of olive oil. You need a little bit of
fat in order to absorb the nutrients.
Rule #2: Fat doesn't affect your blood sugar.
This is important as a rule because fat often gets a bad rap, but it’s actually carbohydrates and protein that affect your blood sugar. A lot of us are not aware of the fact that protein can lead you to converting the protein into sugar and the way that happens is through a process in your body called gluconeogenesis.
Generally speaking, we don't need a lot of animal protein. And because of that, when we
exceed our levels of protein, what happens with that protein is that it gets converted into
Protein can affect your blood sugar. Carbohydrates can affect your blood sugar. But fat does
not and therefore that keeps our blood sugar steady. We're not getting blood sugar spikes, which cause us to have hunger cravings and make you reach out for foods that you’ve been avoiding.
We want to be in command and in control and when our bodies are not cooperating because our blood sugar frequently goes up and down, that makes everything a little bit more difficult. Consider reducing your animal protein consumption.
Rule #3: Fat makes your food satisfying and tasty.
Fat provides a feeling of fullness, satisfaction, and flavor to your food. When you have food that is completely devoid of fat, it often suffers from some flavor deficits. The truth is that we are embarking on a daily path of trying to make better decisions when choosing what to eat. Eating food that is not satisfying makes this extremely difficult. We need to have satisfying food and fat is a critical part of that.
Rule #4: Most plant fats are very fragile outside of their original packaging.
Plant fat’s original packaging is like a nut. If we take almonds, the fat in that almond is going to be highly protected by the fiber and all the other ingredients that are in the nut. When we take the fat out of the almond and isolate it as almond oil, that means that we're taking it outside of its protective packaging, and that lets it be a lot more unstable.
If read the 4 Things You Absolutely Need to Know Before Buying Olive Oil, you'll know that light, heat, and air are going to cause that almond oil or the olive oil or the whatever the plant oil is to become unstable.
When the oil becomes unstable, it can go rancid. And when it becomes rancid, that means it’s been oxidized, so instead of having your antioxidants go to counteracting the effects of aging and all the other damaging effects of being exposed to the environment, they will instead go to reversing the oxidation caused by ingesting this oxidized oil.
Rule #5: All fats are 120 calories per tablespoon.
Plant fat and any fat in general is 120 calories per tablespoon. What this number means is it's easier to eat higher amounts of fat when you consume the oil form than the plant itself. Be aware of the fact that each tablespoon of fat is 120 calories.
With almonds, for example, you would probably have to eat 15 to 20 almonds to get the same amount of calories that you're getting in one tablespoon of the oil. But if you ate 15 almonds, that's a good amount of almonds and you’re going to feel full. Take a tablespoon of almond oil or olive oil or coconut oil and you’re going to get the same amount of calories but you're not going to feel satisfied, which means you’d eat more.
Rule #6: Have no more than 3 tablespoons or any oil per day for weight loss or disease reversal diets.
For my patients that are on my disease reversal diets and weight loss diets, I recommend no more than three tablespoons of any oil per day, and that could be olive oil or whatever oil it is. As long as it's pure oil, you can use it. Just pay attention to the caloric density
However, don't be afraid of almonds. Don't be afraid of avocados. Don't be afraid of nuts because they provide some feedback. You eat it and you feel full, and therefore, that causes you to eat less. Just pay attention to the amount of nuts you eat. With oils, you need to pay more attention because they’re concentrated in calories and they’re also more difficult to ensure whether they’re pure. Read my blog on olive oil to learn more about oils.
Rule #7: Eat a minimum of one handful or raw nuts per day, preferably soaked beforehand.
Nuts are a filling snack and they’re beneficial for you. They have been shown to stabilize insulin levels and stabilize blood sugar levels, and this will prevent that fluctuation in your blood sugar. With nuts, you don't have to worry as much about the calories, too.
If you're on a weight loss plan, you need to pay attention to the calories. In this case, you’re better off having a handful of nuts than a handful of grapes or some other carbohydrate. It's much better for you to get high-quality sources of whole plant food or whole plant fats wrapped in their original packaging.
The other advantage of getting these raw handful of nuts per day is that it provides essential fatty acids in your diet. These essential fatty acids are used for so many processes around your body. It helps with keeping your skin moisturized because the fats that are essential fatty acids are what make up the natural oil barrier of your skin.
Rule #8: Animal fat concentrates the toxins in the animal's body. This includes dairy.
It's okay to eat a certain amount of animal products, but you have to make sure you're choosing the highest-quality animals that you can possibly find. These animals should be grass-fed or pasture-raised. They should be treated humanely and not fed with antibiotics.
If you're eating just your run-of-the-mill store bought animal chicken, beef, or eggs, just realize that the fat that you're eating from there is going to be loaded with all kinds of toxins. Again, it points to the fact that these toxins will also go into your body, so please choose the best and most high quality sources that you possibly can.
Rule #9: Most animal fats are more stable and resistant to oxidation than plant fats.
When animal fat is taken out, like having lard or chicken fat or beef tallow, it’s actually more stable than the plant oils are when they're taken away. The reason is that there's a higher percentage of saturated fats. They are okay to use in little amounts. Again, using the same rule, have no more than three tablespoons of any sort of purified, reduced fat. Pick the highest quality.
If you're cooking at very high temperatures or you're making a traditional cultural dish that you learned from your grandparents or your great-grandparents, use the fat that they used. Some of these fats are a lot more stable. They are not damaged as much with high heat that some of the vegetable oils are. And they have their role in this particular case, but I’m not recommending that they become a part of your regular diet.
In my culture, it was chicken fat that we would use. And on very rare occasions where we'll make a very traditional dish, we cook it with chicken fat because it just tastes better. They keyword here is rare or special occasions. Using it all the time will not be a great idea.
Protein to Fat to Carbohydrates Ratio
When I talk about fats, I often get asked about the concept of having a certain ratio of protein to fat to carbohydrates. While I truly believe that the animal protein intake for almost everyone needs to be reduced to a lower amount (20 to 30 grams only per day), I don't feel like there's any magic ratio of carbohydrate and fat.
I've seen people who've eaten 35% fat and I've had patients who eat 80% fat, and either ratio can be healthy if you pay attention to all the things we discussed, like checking the quality, making sure it doesn't go rancid, watching your purified oil intake, keeping to high-quality sources, consuming a handful nuts per day, and focusing on whole plant food, whole plant sources of fat as the preferable fat source.
If you focus on these rules and you become aware of these particular issues, it allows you to choose these fats appropriately, and you don't have to worry if your ratios are going a little bit higher one day or lower the next. It's not something that you need to concern yourself with because we have enough data in the scientific literature to know that trying to calculate some magic ratio of fat, protein, and carbs hasn't really been shown to do much of anything. But there is a consensus that reducing animal protein benefits you.
Are these insights helpful and actionable for you? Feel free to leave your comments below. Let me know the subjects you would like me to cover in my next lessons or blogs. You can also join the conversation at our Weight Loss Awakening Facebook Group.