Fat vs Sugar!

2014April01_DietandNutrition_AIt’s the age old question for slimmers the world over: how to keep slim or lose weight! Do you cut down on fat or is it better to cut down on sugar? While there are a myriad of contradictory diet trends, the answer may lie somewhere in between and require a little more dietary balance than simply putting sugar or fat on the banned list!

You don’t need to be a fitness guru to know that a diet of fast food and greasy, fried late night snacks washed down with a sugary soda isn’t doing your health or your weight any favors. You may be aware that lean grilled meats and lots of vegetables, with some super foods added is going to boost energy and keep your weight in check. However, in the space between these two opposite nutritional paths it can be a little unclear as to what works to get you on a healthier track.

BBC documentary food for thought

A recent BBC documentary in the UK provided some interesting food for thought by looking at the fat versus sugar debate. Here, two twin doctors each adopted either a high fat, no sugar diet or a high sugar, no fat diet. The overriding results suggested that what is really piling on the pounds and leading to a huge global obesity problem in much of the Western world is a combination of the two and the dangerous dietary impact of processed foods.

Don’t be fooled

The trap many people fall into when trying to cut back with either a low carb or low fat diet is that they don’t pay enough attention to what they are actually eating. Many foods packaged as low-fat contain high amounts of sugar, so this means that in terms of calorie consumption you may not be actually reducing your daily intake. On top of this, low-sugar foods or diet sodas often contain ingredients such as aspartame which often appears on the hit-list of health gurus. Look out for products with hydrogenated fats which are artificial fats that can act in the same way as saturated fats which need to be limited on a low-fat diet. Trans fats are already on their way out!

Eat healthier

Source local, in-season produce and consider quality and using natural ingredients in your diet. While you might want to add sugar to your morning coffee, you don’t want to be eating savory meals that contain outrageous amounts of sugar which you might not even be aware of. While packaging labels are improving why not move away from processed foods altogether and create your own simple, healthy, and nutritious meals. What you’ll soon find is that your cravings reduce and you feel fuller for longer. Herbs, spices and seasoning can help add some real flavor to simple ingredients.

How much is too much?

Rather than focusing too hard on consuming hardly any fat or sugar, recognize that your body needs a balance. Starving your body of fat or sugar can have a real negative impact too and create issues with your body’s metabolic rate, as well as your weight loss. As a guideline a woman who eats 2000 calories a day should include 70g of fat a day and 50g of sugar. If you’re working on more or less calories then you can adjust this amount proportionally.

While monitoring fat and sugar in your diet, it’s vital that you don’t end up following an extreme diet that not only lacks effectiveness but potentially damages your health. And keep in mind that any nutritional plan needs an exercise plan in place too, so get in touch.

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