This is a RE-RUN!
The topic of fat is confusing. I don't necessarily suggest we all do heavy scientific research, but we should give ourselves the basic education. BFL is simple and meant to be that way. That's good and in some ways can hurt if we confuse things. I am not only not against fat, but believe that most all of us aren't getting enough. I'm not even afraid of saturated or animal fat, but we need to understand and not just say, "fat is okay". Getting enough of the right kinds of fat is vital to good health and for that matter, to losing fat. So...not against fat, but am against blanket statements about it.
Mike Harris helped me with this blog. I wrote it and he made really important edits and of course, gave his sage wisdom along the way. Mike and I did disagree on the topic of fat. He swore most people naturally got enough fat from what they already ate and I believe new evidence says otherwise, at least with regard to essential fatty acids, which is what I'm talking about here.
DOESN'T Make You Fat! In fact...it will help you be more FIT
both PHYSICALLY and MENTALLY.
you reach for those french fries you should read the entire blog! Omega 3
Fatty Acids are an absolute miracle and called Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) for
a reason. Your brain is primarily good fat and cholesterol. Ever
heard of "Mommy Brain"? It's a real thing and not because a
woman who just gave birth is more tired and therefore, forgetful. The
baby requires so much healthy fat that new Mother is literally missing parts of
her brain and that's the reason for the phenomena about new Mothers and losing
words, being forgetful, having trouble thinking and such. The solution is
rather simple; it's to immediately supplement with a good quality Omega
3. Omega 3s have a profound impact
on your overall health in many different areas: Physical - significantly lessen your chance of
Cancer Physical - reduces bad
cholesterol Physical - increases good
cholesterol Physical - good for your immune
system and kidneys Physical - increase fat loss
because your body will hold onto the good fat and get rid of what it does not
need (the bad fat) Physical - natural
anti-inflammatory (some bodybuilders won't take NSAIDS such as Advil and alike
drugs because they increase cortisol). It's a necessary supplement for
anyone with any kind of arthritis or chronic pain disease. Mental - reduces anxiety Mental - calms mood swings and
eases depression Mental - helps reduce psychotic
episodes Mental - it has an
enormous effect on ADHD. This is so drastic that brain scans prove people
with ADHD are literally different from a DNA perspective after getting enough
Omega 3. Brain scans further prove that people with ADHD are naturally
deficient in Omega 3. In many
cases people can go off mental health medicines completely after properly
supplementing with Omega 3. Please DO NOT change your medication routine without your
doctor's approval. Your health and medicine are between you and your
doctor. I am simply making the suggestion that you consider doing
something holistic to help yourself and then you might be in a position to
change your regimen. For instance, SSRIs, which are typically given for
depression and anxiety are natural inhibitors to the Human Growth Hormone (HGH)
and will therefore impede muscle gain and fat loss. For a great reference on the
brain and mental health effects of Omega 3 there is a book that is nothing
short of revolutionary called Spark. It's by John Ratey and Eric
Hagerman. That caught my eye initially because it's written by one of the
writers of Driven to Distraction, which, although has now outdated
studies, is still the most referenced and respected book on ADHD. Dr. Amen also
writes a lot about Omega 3 and its effects on his patients. He wrote Magnificent
Mind at Any Age and others on the same topic. Spark is not
specifically about Omega 3, but does reference it a lot. Spark is
entirely about the relationship between exercise and your brain. Please
read Spark and the thoroughly documented studies it references as
evidence. Interestingly, for BFLers especially, Spark talks about
HIIT being best for your mental health, as opposed to other cardio. It's
an absolutely fascinating read. A recent study on anti-depressants showed
that they work in 50% of the people and only 50% of the time, but regular
exercise and proper supplementation has a dramatically higher effectiveness
rate. There are now Psychiatrists who admit that Omega 3 might be the
miracle drug that replaces Lithium. It's vital that we use good
information because as we have seen from the BFL Guestbook, we can all find
lots of studies that directly contradict one another. Spark
uses good quality reliable and verifiable information. When should you take your Omega
3 supplements? It's ideal to take it evenly throughout the day with the
exception of your post workout meal. Your body needs a good whey protein
after workout to quickly feed your muscles and fat will inhibit this
process. Post workout is when you want your body to continue acting
quickly. Fat is best during your last meal. Many people do not
realize this because they know that unauthorized foods are more harmful late in
the day. That is true because then your body will turn it to sugar during
the night instead of acting on it during the day. It's okay and best to
take good fats at night though, because this will keep your system slow and
steady throughout the night when your body is looking to replenish and
rebuild. It's important to take a good
quality. That is not only to be more effective, but also safe.
Poorly made fish oils have heavy metals. You should be okay with a
reputable company and do know that you pay for quality. Also, Charles
Poliquin, the world renowned strength coach, swears that you should not have
fishy burps if you took a good quality capsule. I do not know enough
about that one, but thought it should be mentioned. I do not take
capsules because that's too many pills. I buy my fish oil directly from
the Poliquin Performance Institute at www.charlespoliquin.com
and get it in liquid oil form. (UPDATE: I get Carlson’ now, which is much
less expensive and more easily accessible.
It’s also very good quality). It
does not taste gross because he was smart enough to make his flavored with
lemon. It really does taste lemony. How much Omega 3 should you take? That is a
heavily debated topic with no real answer. It is almost impossible to get
too much. A widely accepted rule of thumb is to take 1 gram per % of body
fat. A teaspoon typically has 5 grams. In my case, still needing to
lose weight at 37.1% body fat, I take 7-8 teaspoons per day. Your body
will naturally release what it does not need. It's not something the body
feels the need to store as excess. If you heavily supplement Omega 3 for
over 4 months then you need to put in some GLA / Omega 6 for about a
month. That's easy to get. Another debated topic is the calories and if they
should count. Some argue all calories count, but I have heard
bodybuilders who take calories very seriously claim that the calories from this
supplement does not count because your body puts it to immediate good use and
will not store in your belly or wherever. Most people are seriously lacking in Omega
3. Even eating fish doesn't always do it because it gets damaged in the
heating process. There are THREE (major) different kinds
of Omega 3: ALA - Alpha-Linolenic Acid EPA - Eicosapentaenoic Acid DHA - Docosahexaenoic Acid It gets complicated now so I
will try and simplify. Fats are long chains of carbon atoms. ALA is
18 carbons long, EPA is 20 and DHA is 22 carbons long. Why are you
telling me this you ask? Ahhh, because your body actually uses the
DPA/DHA. It takes the ALA and converts it to DPA/DHA, but it's a terribly
inefficient process. It is sometimes as bad as 2.7% goes to what you
need. Fish oil has EPA & DHA. ALA is in nut butter, flax, soy
and a few green veggies. The one with the most ALA is by far, flax.
Should you ditch the flax to
get a more effective Omega 3? No, not entirely, but you need fish
oil. The absolute best source of flax oil that I have seen is Udo
Oil. It's a good quality and will benefit you, but it should not be your
only source of fat. The 2.7% conversion is simply not enough. What
I have learned is that fish oil cannot be ignored. You would still
benefit from the flax because flax does a more effective job reducing
lipids. I will continue to get Udo Oil. Other brands interest me
less because flax goes rancid so easily and quickly. Udo oil does NOT
contain any fish oil. It is solely ALA. Now...some final bombshell
thoughts on fat. New studies are strongly indicating that the American
Heart Association is wrong about cholesterol and animal fat. They show
that eating healthy fatty foods do not negatively affect our cholesterol and
heart they way once thought. I do not know, but am interested to learn
more about this one. Along the same line of thinking, Charles Poliquin
recommends having whole eggs and not just the whites. He claims that we
process the whites alone too quickly to use them. Having the entire egg
will provide the fat that slows up the protein and will make it be better
utilized and the yolk is what contains all the nutrients. He agrees that
the cholesterol arguments about whole eggs are a farce. Again, I don't
know because I haven't seen enough information either way, but putting it out
there. Keep in mind that having all your eggs as whole eggs will be too much so why the extreme all whole or all whites? At least 20% of your diet
should be healthy fat. We often forget this absolutely vital
element. I would LOVE to see a study
done on Vegans. Please let me know if you see one! If flax cannot
convert highly enough then I wonder what their brains scans look like.
comments are welcomed and encouraged.
NOTE - When someone is taking blood thinners it's important
to consult your physician before taking anything else that also thins
“"Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out..." - Robert J. Collier”
Olive Oil (Extra-virgin) FTW IMHO
I went out walking through the city center, it happened just the other day. Sometimes Sydney Harbor in the winter, blows a little luck my way.
Very true...fat does not make you fat! Typically a person needs at least 0.45g of fat per lb of body weight in order to support/maintain body functions. For guys especially, dietary fat aids in the production of testosterone...Excess calories is what makes you fat.
Jessica, Parson Brown, anyone - I agree with all of the above but I need someone to break it down into laymen's terms. I do not like taking a handful of supplements and neither does my wallet, if you know what I mean. So, if I were to buy one (and one only) supplement to get in my daily Omega 3s, what would you suggest?
If you were to get 1 and only one supplement for Omega 3s or healthy fat in general, then it's absolutely fish oil.
Thanks, Jessica - used to take it but I stopped a few years ago. Will get back on it ASAP!
A gal I went to high school with is a fitness trainer and former professional body-builder with a degree in nutrition. I recently asked about her diet - it is 40-60% fat yet she has great blood work and incredibly low body fat. At 51 she is still shooting magazine covers and can do 25+ pullups.
Want it. Plan it. Do it.
More puzzling than that is the strange difference sometimes between body fat content and cholesterol levels. I have known folks who were as skinny as a rail with a cholesterol level that was through the roof.
The people who are skinny as a rail with high cholesterol are typically "skinny fat". Basically, they have fat deposits on their organs, but don't look fat. There are several factors for high cholesterol, but there's no question that being fat, be it overtly or inside is the biggest one.
Now that's interesting. I certainly have heard about 40-30-30. That's the first time I've heard about a diet being that high in fat.
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