By Registered Dietitian
on September 16, 2008
Controlling your weight comes down to one thing - managing calories. More...
By dotFIT experts
on October 07, 2008
Dieting to lose weight is difficult at best, and generally ends in frustration for the average person. The majority of people gain most of the weight back within the first year. However, there are three strategies that have consistently proven to be effective in losing weight and maintaining the loss. More...
By Registered Dietitian
on September 26, 2008
Years of misjudging your intake by just a few calories at a time will end up sabotaging your weight. For example, if you gain the average amount of one pound per year, this means you’re off by only 10 calories a day. More...

Answer: No, eating more calories than you burn makes you fat, whether those calories come from carbohydrates, protein or fat. There are essential fatty acids that the body needs for health and normal functioning that must be acquired through diet. Additionally, sufficient fat will make you feel fuller, improve the taste of what you eat, and add to your skin and hair care. Certain fats called omega 3's are very healthful, and higher intake of these fats has been associated with lower risk of heart disease, certain cancers, cognitive decline and decreased systemic inflammation such as in rheumatoid arthritis.

Current dietary fat recommendations are as follows:

  • Consume less than 10 percent of calories from saturated fatty acids, with less than 300 mg/day of cholesterol, and keep trans fatty acid consumption as low as possible
  • Keep total fat intake between 20 to 35 percent of calories, with most fats coming from sources of polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fatty acids, such as fish, nuts, and vegetable oils

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Below are the two types of unsaturated fats:

  • Monounsaturated fats are found in high concentrations in canola, peanut, and olive oils; avocados; nuts such as almonds, hazelnuts, and pecans; and seeds such as pumpkin and sesame seeds
  • Polyunsaturated fats are found in high concentrations in sunflower, corn, soybean, and flaxseed oils, and also in foods such as walnuts, flax seeds, and fish. Omega-3 fats, which are fast becoming the darling of the supplement industry, are an important type of polyunsaturated fat. The body can't make these, so they must come from food. An excellent way to get omega-3 fats is by eating fish two or three times a week. If you do not consume fish in these amounts you may choose to use an appropriate supplement

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