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It's better to eat a little fat than a lot of this

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
March 5th, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Junk food is one of the most prevalent foods on the planet. Sugary drinks, carbohydrate-rich foods, and candy are everywhere. Even our breakfast cereals are made chiefly of sugar. In our society obsessed with cutting fat, we have made our health worse by substituting the flavor inherent in fat, with the artificial flavors of sweeteners.

Sugar is cheap and easy to produce, and being a virtually pure carbohydrate, our bodies crave it. However, our bodies evolved in a time when carbohydrates were rare, and most of our food consumption was low in calories. As a result, our primitive ancestors spent all day hunting and foraging for food, just to stay alive.

Today, we eat enough calories in one meal to sustain us for an entire day. Most of those calories come from added sugars.

We are always concerned about fat. We eat leaner cuts of meat, and prefer low-fat and non-fat products at the supermarket. However, it isn't the fat we need to worry about, because it's not the fat that's making us fat.

It's the sugar.

Fat found in meats, cheeses, and dairy products have been the traditional culprit, however we love rich foods. Foods that lack strong flavors are generally rejected, which means fewer sales. This is why fat-free "health foods" enjoy less market share than junk foods. To bridge this gap, many foods will reduce fat only to replace it with sugar. They can then advertise the fat-free nature of the product while ensuring its taste remains palatable.

As you consume less fat, you often consume more sugar, without even realizing it.

The problem is biological. Our bodies need carbohydrates for energy. We metabolize them just like sugar, which is essentially fuel for the body. Since our bodies evolved at a time when fuel was typically scarce, they tend to store extra energy as fat, just in case lean times should come.

When we consume carbohydrates and sugars, we make ourselves much fatter than we do by consuming fats.

This is not to say that fat is good for you - it too has its problems. Fat and cholesterol can clog arteries and lead to heart trouble.

However, people who consume mass quantities of carbohydrates need to understand they are also endangering themselves.

Sugary drinks are the worst with soft drinks labeled as a popular culprit. However, soft drinks are not the only beverages responsible for making us fat. Juices, for example, actually contain more sugar than soda. Of course, most juices are not juices at all, but mostly sugar water, mixed with a small amount of juice along with artificial colors and flavorings. Many juice drinkers think they're making a healthy choice, when in reality, they'd be better off with a soda pop.

Sugary foods also leave us unsatisfied, since the body processes these sugars rapidly and leaves us hungry or more. As a result, we tend to overeat, adding calories on top of calories.

It's better for us to eat protein rich foods, even if they have a little fat, than to eat foods high in carbohydrates.

Of course, the best thing you can consume in large quantities are vegetables. Natural fruits are also generally okay, especially as substitutes for candy and other sugar-laden treats.

In all cases, a diet should be balanced, and one should consult with their physician before embarking on a particular diet. However, be advised, that it's better to have a little fat in your diet, than a lot of sugar. 

Article brought to you by: Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)