Chewing the Fat: The Best Time to Eat the Grease
According to a study on NationalMaster.com, the United States has the highest obesity rate among all countries, coming in at 30.6%. It’s no surprise that many of us are trying to burn the fat and drop some weight. You may think cutting fat from your diet is a good way to start, but you couldn’t be more wrong.
Fat is an important part of the human diet. It’s the trans-fats that we need to watch out for. Eating low fat meals is a great way to monitor your fat intake without completely eliminating the fat from your diet.
Unfortunately, not all low-fat meals taste as good as the their full-fat counterparts. So, let’s face it . . . most of us are going to consume a higher fat meal from time to time. If you’re going to splurge, let’s look at what might be the best time of day to do so.
Choose Your Time Wisely
Breakfast is one of the best times of day to eat a little extra fat. Studies conducted at the University of Alabama have concluded that by “eating like a king” in the morning may help prevent metabolic syndrome, which is characterized by abdominal obesity, high triglycerides, insulin resistance and other heart disease risk factors.
According to Dr. Martin Young, associate professor of medicine in the UAB Division of Cardiovascular Disease: “The first meal you have appears to program your metabolism for the rest of the day.”
This study suggests that if you ate a carbohydrate-rich breakfast it would promote carbohydrate utilization throughout the rest of the day, whereas, if you have a fat-rich breakfast, you have metabolic plasticity to transfer your energy utilization between carbohydrate and fat.
In addition to the body not reacting to the fat in the breakfast meal as it does to a meal in the evening, there are other benefits to eating a fatty meal in the beginning of the day. A fatty meal in the morning can help a person to feel fuller longer.
Like protein, fat is slow to digest, which means that it is in the stomach longer signaling the brain your body is not hungry. This can also lead to less snacking during the day.
Eating a fatty meal in morning also provides the body with ample time to burn that fat as energy. Fat can supply the body with a lot of energy for long periods of time. This can help a person remain active all day long, without the crash that you can get from sugars and caffeine.
Everything Is Fine in Moderation
It’s a word we hear constantly—Moderation. There are also quite a few health concerns with eating too much fat in a single sitting.
A quick study done by a couple of ABC’s newsmen found that a single meal of exceptionally high fat can have serious consequences to the body. Yunji de Nies and Jon Garcia went to the University of Maryland to have their blood and arteries examined before and after a meal high in fat and calories. The findings were staggering.
Before the meal they were both considered healthy with the correct amount of fat in their blood systems and healthy arteries and heart function. Immediately after the first test the two gentlemen engaged in a large meal consisting of deep fried macaroni and cheese, quesadilla burgers and deep dish sundaes.
Their calorie count for the single meal was 6,190 and their fat count was 187 grams each. This was over three times what the United States government recommends for an individual in a single day.
Two hours after these men engaged in this huge meal, they went back to the University of Maryland to repeat their previous tests.
Researchers found that their hearts were working much harder to pump blood because of the high amount of fat that was in their bloodstreams. Both de Nies and Garcia reported feeling tired and sluggish, which was unusual for them.
They also felt nauseated due to their binging on food and fat. The blood work proved that there was an excess of fat in their blood system and that a single meal can make a significant difference in the body.
The affects of the high fat meal that the pair consumed did not linger. Tests showed that after six hours, their blood pressure, heart functions and blood chemistry had returned to normal. The two men also reported to have felt better than they had been feeling while the fat was in their system.
What Does this Mean for You?
So does this mean you should have Scrapple, hash, and bacon to start every day? No. While breakfast would be the best time to consume these foods in moderation, you should try and include healthier fats by adding walnuts or peanut butter to your oatmeal, organic butter to your whole grain toast or flax seeds to your smoothie. These are all good options, as well as switching to full-fat yogurt.
It is important to remember that some fats are acceptable and even necessary for proper bodily functions. You should try and limit or avoid saturated fats and trans-fats. The following list includes some healthier fats to incorporate into your diet.
Oils — Make small changes like swapping canola oil for butter in recipes and using extra virgin olive oil for stovetop cooking. Both are contain mono- and poly-unsaturated fats, which are healthy fats.
Avocados — Avocados are a high-fat, yet nutritious food loaded with carotenoids, which are great for overall health and can aid in disease prevention. Use them on sandwiches, or even mashed instead of mayonnaise.
Nuts and seeds – Because of their higher fat content, nuts were once considered a no-no. In reality, it’s the type of heart-healthy fat they have that makes them healthy. Nuts are also a good source of fiber, and are high in vitamins A and zinc.
Fish — Cold water fish, like salmon and tuna, has omega-3 fats in it that are known for their heart healing properties. Remember this pertains to fresh tuna, not the canned varieties.
As always, speak to your health care provider before changing your diet. There are certain medications that will require a change in dosage should you begin to lose weight.
There are also some conditions that may be aggravated if a sudden change in the diet should occur, including a change in the time that a person eats. Your doctor may even recommend a nutritionist who can assist you in finding a healthier way to eat and a more satisfactory weight.
Your improved health, both mental and physical, will be well worth the difficulties met while attempting to make these changes.