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Healthy weight people - low fat or not?


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I've seen some articles lately that say that the trend to eat low fat has contributed to more long-term weight gain than loss. I say long-term because the people will lose weight at first, but then often gain it all back and then some. Those of you who are a healthy weight and have been some for some time, what do you say? Do you eat low-fat? Do you eat moderate fat? Do you enjoy your food;)?

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I'll share my overall eating habit... from my 20's to my 30's my non-pregnant weight was always between 112-120 lbs (at 5ft. 4in.). I delivered my babies at 150-155 lbs. I nursed. I ate low fat the entire time, with the exception of cheese and sour cream... but those were in my diet maybe a couple times a week. I come from a family with high metabolism. So long as I ate regularly and never overate, I just stayed at those weights. I ate sweets from time to time, but never more than a couple times a week... as in, desserts... but I did enjoy a chocolate about 5 times a week...

 

In my 30's to now I went post menopausal due to emergency hysterectomy. My body believes it is now in it's 50's to 60's and it really, really wants to look like a droopy pear!!! I struggle to keep my weight between 135-145. I eat the same way as always. Somtimes I low-carb it a while and drop 20 lbs., but it creeps back... I have a goal of exercising for my overall health now, I just have to find something fun or I wont stick with it...

 

Don't know if that helps or not... I sure miss my 20's! It was so easy to keep my weight maintained back then... hormones (or lack of) really change it all...

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I lost 20 pounds last year on a low-carb diet. I recently noticed that a had put a couple pounds back on so I have just started my diet again with the intention of losing another 20 pounds or so. I'll then take another break and continue the cycle until I'm at the weight I want to be.

 

My food tastes great to me and I often find that by cutting out refined sugar all the food I eat has so much more flavor. JMO, I know not everyone agrees with low-carb.

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I eat a combination. I drink non-fat milk, eat low-fat/non-fat sugar free yougurt, low fat cheese. I use as much canola and olive oil as I need and I eat more chicken than red meat. Also, though I'll drink a fat-free latte, plain old drip coffee must have half-n-half (disgusting without it).

 

Even if you don't choose to follow the South Beach diet, it does explain good/bad fat, low/no fat, as well as limiting sugar and simple carbohydrates.

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We eat everything full fat and lots of extra butter or olive oil on our toast or veggies or pasta or whatever. I am very trim and my dh is about 10lbs overweight, but he always has been (for the last 20yrs). He's losing the weight currently, by doing a LOT less carbs. But still plenty of fat. We love to eat this way. Our food tastes great! I cook most everything from scratch because of food allergies, etc. And cost.

I'm a total believer in good fats and low sugar being the key to healthy eating

 

Jen

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Read Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon for a whole discourse on the fat question. This is actually a cookbook with lengthy forwards to each section. I'm struggling with weight as well, but am determinedly moving toward whole/real food, balanced portions. If only the exercise part were in place, but that's another thread.

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My little family (hubby, kid and I) are the only people in our entire extended family w/o weight issues. We're also the only ones who eat butter, half and half, red meat, bacon, etc. Kid drinks tons of whole or 2% milk and adores bread. Hubby and I *shouldn't* eat gluten, but splurge on homemade bread and pizza occasionally (his brother has celiac and he is intolerant, and it is a seizure trigger for me). We allow NO artificial sweeteners, HFC, or fake fats in this house.

 

We all have perfect cholesterol, etc. I have some other health issues, but they aren't diet related (I've been told ad nauseam). Hubby and kid are so healthy it is disgusting.

 

I've read many studies that say the eating of artificial fats and sweeteners prompt the brain to seek out more food, as the "satiety button" (so to speak) is not only not flipped by artificial foods, but that the fake stuff actually creates a craving for more.

 

Frightening.

 

 

a

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Full fat. In order to reduce the fat, the food needs to be processed from its original form - and I think that's where the problems of our bodies processing the food comes from. And, I don't end up eating as much. For instance, a dollop of full fat yogurt with some fruit is somehow more satisfying than the no fat dollop.

 

ETA I do enjoy my food - a great deal; food in and of itself makes me happy. And I don't have a light hand when it comes to oil - olive or coconut oil, butter - those things end up in nearly everything I make. Especially the olive oil. Love that stuff. My cholesterol levels are perfect and my weight is on the low end of ideal for my height (and I don't exercise nearly as much as I should). The thing is - I only eat when I'm hungry, and then only until I'm satisfied. I also make sure my plate is filled with lots of vegetables and fruits, as well as where ever the fat is coming from.

Edited by LauraGB
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I've seen some articles lately that say that the trend to eat low fat has contributed to more long-term weight gain than loss. I say long-term because the people will lose weight at first, but then often gain it all back and then some. Those of you who are a healthy weight and have been some for some time, what do you say? Do you eat low-fat? Do you eat moderate fat? Do you enjoy your food;)?

 

I'm on the lower range of normal weight - very thin for my height. So are my husband and kids. We don't eat low fat AT ALL. Full fat cheese, sour cream, yogurt...whatever cuts of meat we feel like...healthy oils...lots of eggs...and more butter than I'd really like to admit. :D We also eat tons of fruits and veggies.

 

What we do NOT eat is processed food of any sort, or much sugar. I think the trouble is that in trying to stay away from high fat foods to lose weight, people eat more 'fake' food. They replace their butter with margarine, buy low-fat salad dressings and dairy products full of chemicals and additives, and packaged foods that claim to be low calorie. All this extra 'stuff' in food takes a real toll on your health, in my experience. It certainly doesn't seem to help anyone get healthier or lose weight.

 

My opinion? Eat REAL FOOD. Enjoy it. Avoid things that come out of a box and have a whole paragraph's worth of ingredients you don't recognize. I've never met anyone who didn't feel a lot better eating this way (although I have met lots of people who think it's nuts and aren't willing to try!)

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I am at the low end of my healthy weight zone, I eat a fair amount of food (never until I'm stuffed), treats occasionally, and I eat all full-fat except for milk ( 1% because I like it better). We eat almost zero white flour, no trans fats, and hardly any refined sugars

I think the key for us is to eat only "REAL" food.

I would reccomend "In Defense of Food" - great book and really explains the 'real food' concept.

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I eat a "normal" diet - meaning I eat beef, chicken, pork, fish, all kinds of veggies and fruits, and butter, half and half, 2% and whole milk, and all kinds of cheeses and grains. I don't eat fake sugar or foods made nonfat by the replacement of fat with something else. I do eat way too much junk food. I've been a healthy weight all my life - although, as someone else said (BMW?), I find that it is harder to maintain as I get older and my hormones change.

 

The thing I've found most helpful is eating on a regular schedule. Food really isn't all that important to me, so I have a habit of skipping meals, or eating whatever is easiest. When I start eating regularly, a few things happen. The first couple of days I have to force myself to eat at set times, then the next week or two I am ravenous and start gaining weight. After a couple weeks my appetite settles down and I start to lose. I usually couple this with an uptick in my exercise levels because it is part of my trying to live a healthier lifestyle overall. I don't change the types of food I eat though (quantity varies with appetite). I also don't do hours of exercise. 20 to 30 minutes of stationary bike or weight machines anywhere from 2-5 days a week is all.

 

This is probably way more info than you wanted, but hopefully it will help you clarify your thoughts.

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High fat, low allergen!

 

Also, a fair amount of wild game and nothing processed.

 

But, when I was at first only allergic to a few things, I ate some processed stuff and mainly chicken and turkey that were not organic.

 

I also start out each meal with a salad, none of those processed dressings, just different types of oils and vinegars.

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I used to use non or low-fat things--such as marg. and sour cream, but have found, as many of the ladies have said, that it seems to be healthier to do the natural fats. We eat lots of veggies and nuts as well. Your body absorbs the natural fats better.

 

I do need to get going with exercise. We started back to homeschooling this week, and I scheduled in 30 minutes of morning exercise. That's worked well for the 3 days we've done it so far! :D We often take the dog on a walk in the afternoon, so we get that exercise as well.

 

Oh, and yes, I've always loved food! :D Eating more "natural" FEELS good once your body adjusts, and your body starts WANTING the healthier, more natural foods!

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I think that there's a difference between low-fat milk and low-fat cookies. I drink skim milk, but I don't eat any low-fat processed foods (those calories add up!). For "everyday" meals, I go easy on butter, oil, fatty meats, etc., but if I'm going to have a cookie once in a while, I'm not settling for low-fat. Same with cheese: I'll use low-fat in a enchiladas and lasagna (and usually use less than the recipe specifies), but if I'm going to eat cheese on its own, it's got to be the best (i.e. triple cream brie). I have always been petite, and this approach has worked very well for me.

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Low fat foods are usually filled with fructose... That's the mistake people make when they go low fat. Fructose is actually one of your biggest enemies, not fat per se.

Aren't those sort of artificially lowered fat foods, like low fat cookies and salad dressings, rather than, say, zucchini?

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My husband and kids and I are all at the lower end of healthy weight and have always been. Our cholesterol is in the ideal range. I eat almost nothing that I don't cook myself - we don't eat anything that is preseasoned, packaged or boxed. I even make my own breakfast cereal. I eat very little sugar and simple carbohydrates. I don't eat chicken or pork, ever - except those chicken apples sausages. I cook with butter or olive oil unless I am making fritters which need a higher heat ;) Our typcial meal has grass-fed beef or buffalo if there is a meat and two or three veggies of different colors. We eat a meatless meal that is a veggie main dish or a brown rice dish a couple of times a week. We eat a fish dish at least once a week, but it depends on the price of salmon. I read labels like a fiend because of my migraines. So many times low-fat things are too processed and too much good stuff is taken out of them and relaced with something inferior - like taking the fat out of milk to make yougurt then adding corn starch to make it thick - eww. I try to make things that keep my blood sugar balanced because I've always bordered on having a problem. I try to eat things that are natural and have known ingredients. I don't eat anything with artifical or natural flavors listed on the label - since I don't know whats in it.

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Aren't those sort of artificially lowered fat foods, like low fat cookies and salad dressings, rather than, say, zucchini?

:) if you get a choice between low-fat and full-fat zucchini, choose the full-fat version.:lol:

 

the reminds me - I picked another armload of the things this morning. I must make zuchinni fritters again. Yum.

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Aren't those sort of artificially lowered fat foods, like low fat cookies and salad dressings, rather than, say, zucchini?

I should have stressed artificially lowered fat foods, yes, that's what I had in mind. :) Not foods which are naturally low in fat.

 

Basically there was this whole epoch of low fat craze when they started lowering fat in foods on the market, and then they needed something to make up for the taste, so they started putting in - fructose. There's so much SWEET food out on the market that doesn't even taste sweet, but it's filled with HFCS and alike. So the low fat craze, on the long run, brought about additional health issues as well as actually turned out to be counter-productive in wanting to lose weight.

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You are all so affirming:D I have lost 8 pounds now on a moderate fat (with most fat coming from olive oil, avocados and cheese) diet and 45 min. (of what is for me) hard exercise. I am eating way more veggies than I used to and use whole grains. I rarely eat sugar. But I was feeling guilty because I was not eating lower fat. No more guilt!

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I'm 5'3" and weigh around 115.

I eat all the fat I want, but I only cook with what I call "good" fats. I cook with butter, coconut oil and olive oil. I will use canola oil if I bake a cake, but that is very rare. I eat (real-not processed slices) full fat cheese and cream cheese.

 

What I do try to stay away from is lots of breads, high carb veggies and sugar. The breads I do eat are whole wheat. I make all pancakes and muffins whole wheat.

 

I try to eat high fiber and lots of protein.

 

Full fat foods will help curb hunger. I can eat fat free, artificially sweetened yogurt and be very hungry. I can eat an ounce or two of sharp cheddar and curb my appetite.

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So the low fat craze, on the long run, brought about additional health issues as well as actually turned out to be counter-productive in wanting to lose weight.

Did you ever see those ads on TV for those Snackwell low-fat (fat free?) cookies, where the ladies would practically attack the cookie delivery man at the grocery store because they bought about 1000 boxes at one time? That, in my opinion, was the height of the stupidity.

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We eat low sugar, not low fat.

Not low carb. Healthy carbs in moderation.

We try to eat healthy fats - no crisco here. Lots of olive oil and real butter. Peanut oil to fry.

Not afraid of bacon (uncured - no added nitrites/nitrates), steaks, skin-on chx, cream sauce on my fish, cheese or eggs.

I have found that low fat only leaves us hungry. Many store bought low fat foods have lots of added sugars/starches and other chemicals.

 

Since starting the low sugar (I am much stricter on this for me than for my family, but I do shop and cook with it in mind for all of us.) deal 9 years ago, my high LDL and trigycerides have gone away. As long as I stay away from bad carbs, my weight stays balanced. Winter is harder for me because of all the yummy starchy veggies.

 

When we do have sweets, I try to keep it healthy. Homemade cookies, quick breads or the occasional cake from scratch. All natural ice cream. Fruit desserts with whole grain crusts or toppings.

 

All that said, we are real people and do occasionally eat at Wendy's and we LOVE Ghiradelli (sp?) brownies. ;)

We live on a tight budget and carbs are cheap so my family often eats rice, pasta etc. even when I might go without that part of the meal.

 

I am over 40, 5'8" and 145-150 lbs.

Suzanne Somers' books were my starting point on this journey.

 

HTH

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I'm on the lower range of normal weight - very thin for my height. So are my husband and kids. We don't eat low fat AT ALL. Full fat cheese, sour cream, yogurt...whatever cuts of meat we feel like...healthy oils...lots of eggs...and more butter than I'd really like to admit. :D We also eat tons of fruits and veggies.

 

What we do NOT eat is processed food of any sort, or much sugar. I think the trouble is that in trying to stay away from high fat foods to lose weight, people eat more 'fake' food. They replace their butter with margarine, buy low-fat salad dressings and dairy products full of chemicals and additives, and packaged foods that claim to be low calorie. All this extra 'stuff' in food takes a real toll on your health, in my experience. It certainly doesn't seem to help anyone get healthier or lose weight.

 

My opinion? Eat REAL FOOD. Enjoy it. Avoid things that come out of a box and have a whole paragraph's worth of ingredients you don't recognize. I've never met anyone who didn't feel a lot better eating this way (although I have met lots of people who think it's nuts and aren't willing to try!)

 

Couldn't agree more!!!

 

We don't use anything low-fat or reduced fat. Your body needs good healthy fats in order to work properly.

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I haven't read the other replies yet, but I guess I can answer this one. I'm five foot seven, weigh 145 pounds, and have a BMI on the high end of the "correct" range.

 

Right now, I basically eat whatever I want. I don't count fat grams or calories. I don't buy "low-fat" foods.

 

However, I try very hard to not my portions get out of whack. Currently, I have two rules for myself: no seconds of anything, and always eat from a small plate.

 

I got those ideas after reading a very interesting (and funny!) book called "Mindless Eating." It's written by a guy who does "eating studies" to see what makes people eat more, or less, or enjoy their food more or less. Fascinating.

 

So bottom line, I think overeating in general is the culprit, and not how many fat grams a food has.

 

Jenny

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I second the recommendation of Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon.

 

I am currently in the process of losing weight on a full fat/ low grain/ low sugar diet. We only eat real foods here, whole wheat products made from scratch, some veggies from our garden, mostly from the farmers market.

 

Fats used here: pastured butter, organic palm shortening, ghee, olive oil, coconut oil.

We drink raw whole milk.

Full fat dairy products, steering clear of homogenized dairy and ANYTHING with non-fat milk powder (dangerous).

NO refined sugars here. Only honey, maple syrup, rapadura or sucanat.

 

My kids and hubby are all trim and VERY healthy. The kids have great looking teeth too!

 

I lost a lot of weight once doing fat-free/ low fat... but my hair also fell out. Totally screwed up my thyroid, I believe. That was before I had our 2nd child. After that I gained weight on the SAD (Standard American Diet).

 

Now, I am currently losing weight. Eat Fat, Lose Fat is also a great book!! :) I feel a whole lot better now!

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My entire immediate family is at a normal weight or on the skinny side. Some of it is genetics. But I do think our diet is very healthy and that helps too.

 

I don't look for low fat products, except for milk and yogurt, mostly because I don't like the taste of anything but skim milk. And I don't think saturated fats are as healthy, which is what animal products are.

 

On the other hand, we eat fatty meat like bacon and we eat beef sometimes. But I buy humanely raised bacon and grassfed beef, so I feel like the fats are better due to what the animals eat and the exercise they get.

 

We eat eggs all the time. We use real butter and lots of olive oil. We try to incorporate lots of healthy fats, like nuts and wild salmon. I aim for fish once or twice a week.

 

I love olives and avocados and indulge in both regularly.

 

But we don't eat much processed stuff, we don't eat fast food, we don't eat tons of simple carbs- we eat brown rice, whole wheat pasta, etc.

 

And we eat a lot of fruits and veggies and water is our main beverage. So I guess it's just all about balance.

 

ETA: Our downfall is sugar, we all have a terrible sweet tooth. We use honey and real maple syrup as much as possible. I avoid anything with corn syrup so I think we're safe there, but we still eat too much sugar.

Edited by Annie Laurie
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I eat fairly low saturated fat, but don't hold back on olive oil. I don't search out low fat products - we buy very little processed food anyway. We eat a lot of fish, some chicken and much less red meat. We fill up on lots of veg and whole grains. There isn't a McDonalds or a KFC within half an hour of here.

 

Laura

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Just look at what goes into low fat yoghurt to make the consistency right...

 

What goes into it? Please educate me so I can decide if I need to start buying fattier yogurt. I have a container of Horizon organic fat free plain yogurt in my fridge right now, that I use for smoothies, and this is what it says:

 

organic Grade A pasturized nonfat milk, fructan (NutraFlora, a natural dietary fiber), pectin, live and active cultures.

 

Is the fiber filler a bad thing?

 

I only buy organic yogurt if that makes any difference.

 

Thanks!

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HRATR (haven't read all the replies :tongue_smilie:)

 

I am little high on the weight scale BUT I don't think I could get much smaller without losing muscle.

 

We are a FULL fat family. We generally stick to real foods except when dh does the shopping. Men, what can you do? I don't deep fry my foods, limit red meat, throw in some fruits and vegetables. Generally choose olive or grapeseed oil over butter.

 

I refuse lowfat processed foods, I cook with minimal added fat. Full flavor, full life.

 

ETA: We are all healthy weight even me.

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What goes into it? Please educate me so I can decide if I need to start buying fattier yogurt. I have a container of Horizon organic fat free plain yogurt in my fridge right now, that I use for smoothies, and this is what it says:

 

organic Grade A pasturized nonfat milk, fructan (NutraFlora, a natural dietary fiber), pectin, live and active cultures.

 

Is the fiber filler a bad thing?

 

I only buy organic yogurt if that makes any difference.

 

Thanks!

 

It's the nonfat milk. Usually nonfat milk contains dry milk powder. Bad stuff.

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I'm on the lower range of normal weight - very thin for my height. So are my husband and kids. We don't eat low fat AT ALL. Full fat cheese, sour cream, yogurt...whatever cuts of meat we feel like...healthy oils...lots of eggs...and more butter than I'd really like to admit. :D We also eat tons of fruits and veggies.

 

What we do NOT eat is processed food of any sort, or much sugar. I think the trouble is that in trying to stay away from high fat foods to lose weight, people eat more 'fake' food. They replace their butter with margarine, buy low-fat salad dressings and dairy products full of chemicals and additives, and packaged foods that claim to be low calorie. All this extra 'stuff' in food takes a real toll on your health, in my experience. It certainly doesn't seem to help anyone get healthier or lose weight.

 

My opinion? Eat REAL FOOD. Enjoy it. Avoid things that come out of a box and have a whole paragraph's worth of ingredients you don't recognize. I've never met anyone who didn't feel a lot better eating this way (although I have met lots of people who think it's nuts and aren't willing to try!)

 

:iagree:

Same here, we are all at the low end of a normal BMI.

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I'm of a healthy weight though not exercising as I should be. I buy mostly whole foods, make my own breads and sweets (yes, I eat sweets in moderation...definitely at least weekly), eat lots of salads with homemade dressings, etc. I eat lean red meats, lots of chicken (cluck cluck), but try to buy bone-in skin on chicken. I only cook with olive oil or butter. I have one tiny can of Crisco that will last 3 years probably, it's only for pie crust. I don't deep fry. So I guess I'm a combo of low and regular fat... I never intentionally buy "low fat" processed foods because I don't really buy processed foods, other than the odd box of Triscuits or some potato and tortilla chips

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I've seen some articles lately that say that the trend to eat low fat has contributed to more long-term weight gain than loss. I say long-term because the people will lose weight at first, but then often gain it all back and then some. Those of you who are a healthy weight and have been some for some time, what do you say? Do you eat low-fat? Do you eat moderate fat? Do you enjoy your food;)?

I'm a little over weight. Not more than 20 pounds, but still over weight. I've weighted within 5 pounds of this weight for years - if you don't include the just pre- and post-thyroid issues.

 

I eat butter, drink whole milk, use olive oil for any and every recipe calling for oil and do not buy anything that says "low fat" on the package.

 

Not to brag and I don't know how much of this is genetic, but when I had my first and only cholestorol test this spring I found out I need to eat more dietary fat. My numbers are quite low. I may not be processing fat soluble vitamins.

 

We eat 2-3 vegetarian days a week, lots of veggies and whole grains at every meal.

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And over the last couple of years I've lost almost 30lbs (most of it last year). I'm 5'9" and 123 lbs. I do not eat low-fat. I do not closely watch what I eat. I try to eat healthy, stick to normal portion sizes, I eat lot of fruit and veggies, but I also eat dessert and have snacks. I eat red meat and cheese. I enjoy food.

 

I also run 3x's a week and do power yoga 3x's a week.

 

I also know that every body is different. Some people need to watch the carbs, some need to watch fats. My sister is the kind of person who looks at bread and gains weight. Where as my mom just needs to keep at watch on the calories. You have to know your body and what works for you. Everyone needs some exercise.

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We eat everything full fat and lots of extra butter or olive oil on our toast or veggies or pasta or whatever. I am very trim and my dh is about 10lbs overweight, but he always has been (for the last 20yrs). He's losing the weight currently, by doing a LOT less carbs. But still plenty of fat. We love to eat this way. Our food tastes great! I cook most everything from scratch because of food allergies, etc. And cost.

I'm a total believer in good fats and low sugar being the key to healthy eating

 

Jen

 

:iagree: (and relate to) all of this!

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Full whole fats here- no trans fats or deep fried foods or processed vegetable oils which are heated- those kinds of fats are not healthy....but butter, ghee, whole milk, avocados, raw nuts, raw coconut oil and extra virgin olive oil....yes, unrestricted.

 

The low fat movement is definitely responsible for a large part of our obesity epidemics.

 

Fats have always been highly valued in traditional cultures. They contain important nutrients, especially for the brain and for growing children. You can't just discard a whole massive food group because it has more calories per gram than the other two massive food groups, and expect there to be no long term consequences.

 

Fats makes us feel full and satiated- healthy fats that is. So, we naturally stop eating when our bodies have had enough. Fats make us feel content and comforted from our food..so we are less likely to then binge and overeat in an unbalanced way. It's not that Weight Watchers doesnt work...it does, because it is a restricted calorie diet...but it leaves you feeling starving and unsatisfied, so it takes massive willpower to keep going! And for many, the emphasis on carbs is not healthy, because if you cut out fats, you only have protein and carbs left. I am not a high protein diet fan either (bad for the kidneys), or even a high fat one...both have their problems. Just a balanced diet.

 

For weight loss...instead, focus on eating whole, healthy foods in their natural, unprocessed form. Put butter on your toast and you are less likely to want a muffin or chocolate bar for morning tea. Put full cream milk in your coffee and it will tide you over for a while, because it is now a food. The taste alone of fats is comforting and satisfying and doesn't leave you craving.

 

As others have said, Nourishing Traditions is a great book on this topic, but you dont even need to read a book on it. Just consider how people have traditionally eaten for thousands of years...they would literally travel hundreds of miles seasonally to get their fats, they wree so highly valued. Our grandparents ate bread and dripping during the war. There is plenty of info in the internet, and I dont agree with all of the Nourishing Traditions approach either...I find it a bit extreme, myself, and I personally prefer to keep my meat intake low for ethical reasons. I just eat normal, whole foods, and value my fats for how they help me feel happy and comforted by my diet. Then I don't obsess about food and think about it all the time, and so I don't overeat. If I ate what I see other people eat, I would be overweight. I dont restrict myself in how much I eat, but I do restict myself from eating modern, processed foods. But I lvoe my diet- it is varied, insteresting and satisfying.

 

The emphasis on extreme and unbalanced diets in the last decades has left a trail of suffering and obesity as people try to squeeze themselves into unnatural patterns of eating. Your body knows what it needs and we are all a little different..some do fare better on more protein, or more fat, or more carbs, but we all need some of each, and most of us will be somewhere in the middle. I find a low carb diet is absolutely terrible for me (makes me feel depressed), and a low fat one makes me feel deprived and starving. I have tried many types of diets. I think its more important that you dont eat processed and deep fried foods, chemicals and preservatives, and artificial sugars....because they muck around with your natural hunger mechanisms. MSG makes you thirsty. Aspartame is poisonous.

 

Dont believe the marketing of any goverment organisation or any other organisation with an agenda.

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I know I should exercise. Others are probably healthier at a somewhat "over" weight exercising than I am at a low weight without. I intend to change this at some point and start exercising.

 

But anyway, just in terms of weight and not holding myself out as some 'perfect health' specimen .....

 

I do not watch fat closely. I eat full fat cheese and cream cheese (regularly). I don't eat as much meat as the average American, but I am fond of eggs. I drink in moderation, which is to say I drink a little bit almost every night.

 

I like vegetables and fruit.

 

I do not watch carbs except that I watch them go from my plate to my mouth. I really really really love my carbs. I don't have a taste for the truly junky - I don't care about oreos, candy, off the shelf "treats." I do have a taste for white rice and pasta, though. I eat whole wheat bread. I just tend to think that if you eat a lot of white pasta with vegetables, that should be okay.

 

Anyway, I think the biggest thing in my favor is that I don't have a major "relationship" with food. I like it. I eat it. I love eating good food, but I don't comfort myself with it. I don't eat because I am bored. I eat three meals and snacks, but I don't really obsess about them. Before I developed a sensitivity to nuts, I would often eat a few handfuls of trail mix and call it lunch. Yes, that was fattening. But then I didn't have to think about food all afternoon! This strikes me as an advantage because it's efficient, but I have noticed that other women think about food even if they are not hungry. If I am not hungry, I am not thinking about food except in terms of what to make my family for dinner. I don't know, though, if I think less about it because I don't have a weight problem. I was 20 pounds overweight in college, and I thought about food a lot more than, had more guilt when I ate, etc. I lost it by doing more low fat food, but in Japan where it's easy to eat low fat and (at least at the time) that didn't mean, "Low fat muffin stored on the grocery store shelf for six months." You know?

 

I think developing a taste for rice and vegetables is a different way of eating low fat than trying to eat pizza with fat free cheese.

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My children and I are on the thin side and always have been. My dh is a normal weight. We focus on whole foods, but not necessarily low fat. We drink 2% milk and use butter (not margarine). We eat cheese, red meat (~2x per week), olive oil, nuts, avocados, eggs, etc.

 

We eat a lot of produce as well.

 

When I am cooking I will often alter a recipe, i.e. swap oil for applesauce when baking, cut the butter in half for a recipe, use 2% milk thickened with a bit of cornstarch in place of heavy cream, or swap half of the milk (in macaroni and cheese, for example) for broth.

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I eat a high fat diet. I feel best when I am getting between 50% and 60% of my calories from fats. I have gradually upped my fat intake over the past couple of years to alleviate some inflammatory/autoimmune issues. The results have been amazing -- I feel great and my cholesterol levels just keep improving (my doctor said my good cholesterol is as high as she has ever seen -- 15 years ago I was told that I would need to be on meds for cholesterol issues). Most of my fat comes from olive oil, eggs, fish, nuts, and seeds, and I eat lots of dairy and a bit of meat and poultry. My basic food philosophy is to focus on produce and protein. I can't have wheat and don't bother a ton with other grains, but I get lots of carbs through produce and beans. Eating this way I maintain a BMI right in the mid-range for where I should be without exercising, and at the lower end of where I should be if I do keep up with exercise.

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