How effective are low fat diets for weight loss? Well, fat plays a major and essential role in the maintenance of the body’s best health. It is an important source of energy and helps the body in the absorption of necessary vitamins to boost health. Fat is important for several reasons: it aids in proper growth, and is needed to maintain healthy skin and hair. This also provides insulation to the body and regulates body temperature. It also aids in the regulation of hormones, and helps in the development of cell membranes necessary for controlling inflammation, brain development and blood clotting. Fat is an important factor that makes the body feel full and gives taste to foods. Dietary fat plays a very essential role to the cholesterol levels of the body as well. Nutrition planning should also be considered prior to starting any diet program.
Low Fat Diets for Weight Loss – The Bad Fats
However, not all fats are good to the body. Fat has 9 calories per gram; thereby it contains twice as many calories compared to both carbohydrates and protein. Hence, it is a contributor to weight gain, and most women and big people don’t want to grow heavier each day. The fats that are major culprits to weight gain and must be avoided are the saturated fats and trans fats.
The saturated fats are bad fats that cause the high LDL levels, or bad cholesterol. It is necessary to read food labels to know the percentage of saturated fats contained in packed foods. One must avoid or limit the food products that are high in saturated fats. These fats are commonly found in fatty meats, ice cream, cream, cheeses, butter and whole milk, and in oils like palm, coconut, and palm kernel. The trans fats are commonly found in fried foods, processed foods, and commercial baked goods like crackers, cookies, and donuts. Moreover, hard butter and margarine contain oils that have become hardened which are referred to as hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated fats, also containing high levels of trans fatty acids. These fats are widespread in fast food chains and in foods that are processed or snack favorites.
Healthy & Effective Low Fat Diets
Low fat diets do not totally ban fats from the diet, but limit the consumption to the good fats and in small amounts only. For a healthy diet containing fat, one may use canola oil, olive oil, corn oil, safflower, sunflower, and soybean oil. Regulating the intake of fats or limiting it to a low amount would aid the body in weight loss.
Low fat diets are effective diet plans for several people wanting to lose weight. The low fat diets feature low intake of fat, and high fiber consumption. Diet plans like Mediterranean diet and South Beach Diet incorporate the low fat diet program. These diet plans include lots of vegetables, fruits, seeds, olive oil, plenty of fish and poultry, and other healthy sources of protein. The suggested foods to prepare are those unprocessed and unrefined to make sure that the meals are low in saturated and trans fats. The low fat diets do not only help in weight loss but also reduce the risks of heart disease, hypertension, and other cardiovascular problems, and prevent the formation of gallstones.