Did you hear about the dramatic changes made recently by the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee? For the first time in their report for Dietary Guidelines for Americans, this conservative group has said we do not need to worry about avoiding dietary cholesterol, and there is no longer an upper limit on fat intake for Americans either. Mozaffarian D. JAMA 2015;313:2421-22.
Several recent published studies have shown what many of us have suspected for nearly a decade. Eating cholesterol does not impact cholesterol profiles. In fact, eating more shrimp (a food high in cholesterol) actually improves your cholesterol profile. And eating organic-fed cage free eggs doesn’t impact your cholesterol either—these types of clean eggs turn out to be good for us.
For over 30 years, we have told the American public to decrease fat intake, but recent studies show that eating more of the right kinds of fat decreases inflammation, improves hormone profiles, and controls blood sugar levels. So the best message should be, cut out refined carbs (sugar and flour) and eat more healthy fats.
However, let’s be perfectly clear, no one is suggesting you eat more trans fats or hydrogenated fats. These fats are toxic. And for years, I have recommended that you avoid eating animal fats from animals fed in feedlots or dairy cows fed grains, as their fat has extra omega-6 fat that causes inflammation, hormones from being fed growth hormone, and pesticides from grains tainted with chemicals.
Here is what I recommend to my patients; eat more “SMART FAT”. These fats include cold water wild seafood, olive oil, nuts and nut oils, dark chocolate, cage-free organic eggs, and avocados. The secret for optimal aging and health is that, as you eat more smart fat, you should also be eating more:
- fiber (from vegetables, fruits, beans, and nuts—but not grain turned into flour)
- Clean protein (cage free, pasture raised, wild-caught, grass-fed sources)
- Flavor (with more spices and herbs)
Eat more fat is the theme of my new book, SMART FAT—Eat More Fat, Lose More Weight, Get Healthy Now, which I have co-authored with Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS. Harper One is publishing this new book and it will release in January 2016, with an easy-to-follow plan to turn back the clock on aging, control your waistline, and prevent and reverse heart disease, diabetes, and memory loss. The book will help you understand which fats are smart, which are neutral, and which are dumb. It will keep you from turning smart fats into toxic fats by cooking them at the wrong temperature. And I promise the recipes will be awesome!
Going forward, here are the new rules on fat:
- EAT MORE SMART FAT
- Ensure that you distinguish between smart, neutral, and dumb fats (Hint: clean vs mean)
- Eating more fat isn’t smart unless it comes with more fiber, clean protein, and flavor
- Don’t turn smart fats into toxic fats by cooking them at the wrong temperature
Please contact your local book store or go on-line and pre-order your copy of SMART FAT now. Release date January 19, 2016.
I wish you the best of health!
Steven Masley, MD, FAHA, FACN, FAAFP, CNS