The long and short of it is NO. Eating fats does not make you fat. That doesn’t mean though that you have a free pass to all the fatty things you like. Read on to know more about the practical do’s and don’ts on eating fat.
What makes you gain or lose weight is calories. Its simple math that if you eat more calories than you burn them, you gain weight. If you burn more calories than you eat, you lose weight. However, Fats have a high energy density. This means that on a gram per gram basis, Fats will have more calories than carbs or protein. For example, a teaspoon of butter is the equivalent of 2 cups of broccoli. So if you eat foods that has more fat content, it is very likely it will contain more calories than eating other less fatty foods of the same portion.
There are basically three kinds of fats in general:
There is the Unsaturated Fats (good fats) which are mostly plant and vegetable based fats that does not clog up your arteries and pass through the bloodstream easily. Unsaturated Fats sources are like canola oil and corn oil.
Then there is the Saturated Fats (bad fats) which are mostly animal meat and animal products. These could be from steaks, dairy products like cheese and butter. Alot of baked goods also contain this as they use butter and milk usually at to some point in time. These are not good because they are usually high in cholesterol and can contribute to clogging the arteries and increasing your chances at heart diseases.
Lastly, there is the Trans Fats (bad fats) or Hydrogenated Fats which are man-made. These are created to help extend the shelf-life of processed foods like fries, donuts, cakes, and cookies. Trans Fats are the worst kind because not only do they raise higher cholesterol, they also deplete any good cholesterol (HDL) you may have. So while your body does not need any of these, many manufacturers use this so their products can last on the shelves longer. A key ingredient to watch out or is “hydrogenated oil”. Stay away!
Recent awareness campaigns have already started to take effect and people are now more conscious and food labels are now promoting 0% trans fat in their labels. So next time you choose your products, it pays to read the nutritional label.