#1 Fat does not make you fat. The latest research in nutrition debunks the belief that eating fat makes you fat. Not only does eating fat not make you fat, but your body actually needs vitamins and minerals ONLY FOUND IN high-fat foods! These vitamins and minerals are essential for good health and interact with our cell enzymes to regulate a variety of essential bodily functions. They are crucial for many of our metabolic processes, to release energy from nutrients, and in building and maintaining bones, teeth, skin, blood and many other vital body tissues. You can't get these vitamins and minerals from anything else (other than taking a bunch of supplements). SO instead of shying away from full-fat dairy, avocados, and eggs because of the old belief that these foods make you fat, go ahead and have that avocado, veggie and cheese omelet at brunch!
#2: It's all about insulin. So you may be wondering, ok, if eating fat doesn't make me fat, what does? The answer is your own body's insulin. Insulin is the transport vehicle that gathers up all those erroneous glycogen (blood sugar) molecules floating around in your bloodstream and stores them as fat. What creates that glycogen, your liver. And the liver makes glycogen from carbs and sugar (and some small amount from protein). Why the keto diet is so effective is that this way of eating severely restricts insulin levels. This means the body is not storing glycogen and making new body fat stores. You can steal this approach from the keto diet by controlling your insulin levels and get your body spending more time in "burn fat mode" rather in "store fat mode". This means you have to cut down on the amount of and frequency you consume carbs and sugar. Most Americans slurp down sugar-filled beverages all day long, keeping their insulin flowing all day long and storing fat! Swap your sodas for a sugar-free version, or better yet, drink sparkling water. Swap the sugar our from your coffee to using sugar alternatives like stevia or monk fruit.
#3: The third thing you can borrow from the keto diet is to read labels. My favorite thing to do as an Eating Psychology Counselor is to do a "pantry, fridge and freezer raid" with my clients. During this exercise we read the nutritional label and list of ingredients for every single food item in their home. My rule of thumb as a person following the Keto lifestyle is that if the first 3 ingredients include a grain or sugar, I do not eat it. If an item has more than 5 grams of sugar, I do not eat it. If an item has no business having sugar in it in the first place (because it's not supposed to be "sweet"), I dont eat it. Examples of these items are tomato sauce, peanut butter, frozen vegetables, salad dressings, condiments, etc.
If you steal these three keto rules, you should be well on your way to burning more fat and improving your health!
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