By Phil Wade
In his book “The Cholesterol Myth”, Dr Robert Buist points out a few surprising facts on fats.
• Fats are needed for life
• Some essential fats produce anti-inflammatory substances which control pain and inflammation
• Cholesterol is a vital nutrient in the body’s survival and is not implicated in the majority of cases of Atherosclerosis (narrowing of the arteries
Good Fats, Bad Fats
Below, we point out:
- The difference between good fats and bad fats
- What is meant by trans fats and peroxidated fats
- The body uses all fats – saturated and unsaturated – to generate energy
- How to cook – and not cook – fats
- How omega-3 fats contribute to pain relief
- Exploding the cholesterol myth
- How bad fats affect arteries
- How to stay slim while eating fats
- How reducing fats may cause you to become obese
- How good fats support your immune system
- Trans fats cause ill health
- How trans fats and peroxidated (chemically oxidised) fats are associated with stomach cancer
- How to be sure of obtaining the right ratio of “good fats”
Contrary to popular opinion it is essential to eat a dietary abundance of good fats.
It is true that there are good fats and bad fats, just as there is good and bad cholesterol. The difference is how fats are treated before you eat them and which fats they are. Omega-3 unsaturated fats or oils may be derived from some grass species like flax, most seeds and nuts. The fats from some grass-fed beef may contain a reasonable level of omega-3s.
You also need an abundance of fats (without excess) to trigger fat burning via leptin hormones. So eat fats in the form of Phil’s Oils to stay slim. Starve yourself of fats and have excess carbohydrates and bingo! you will become obese.
If any unsaturated fats are heated in the open air for cooking, they are changed to toxic forms because their shape is altered, and unsaturated fats particularly form toxic Free Radicals by combining with oxygen (peroxidated). These are “trans fats”. So, always eat so-called vegetable oils cold, never cook with them.
Pain relief from Ω-3 fats
What is not mentioned is that SPMs and also the cannabinoid constituent, that is also found in palm oil and soy, PEA may trigger indirectly cannabinoid enzymes in your body to block pain. These are made from these “good fats”.
Other types of fats produce inflammatory prostaglandins E2 that may cause pain. The trick is not to have all of one type rather than the other, but to strike a healthy balance between the types of fats that you consume.
And now they have isolated these unstable chemicals, they are now commercially available in permanent dosage form from naturopaths, to kill pain effectively and naturally, acting in the same way as drugs like gabapentin.
Cholesterol is all bad – true or false?
False. So let’s sort out this lie right now. Cholesterol is needed by your body. It performs many tasks, and is needed for good health. 80% of cholesterol is made in your liver. And for a reason. It is made from fats and sugars through “one-carbon metabolism” and other pathways.
So, if you eat good fats then you make body-building cholesterol that lubricates your skin, provides energy and building material for cells also makes sex and anabolic hormones.
On the other hand, if you eat trans fats or worse, then you will develop a lot of “bad” cholesterol that has become peroxide-contaminated and literally out of shape. It is suspected that residues of pesticide and plastic & petroleum products mainly attach to bad cholesterol and that this is one reason why athrosclerosis develops.
They may also possibly thicken artery walls by building up in foam cells in your general circulation and may actually progress across the artery walls and dissolve into the fatty material of the brain. This may possibly be at least one cause of dementia Alzheimer’s.
Fatty arteries (athrosclerosis).
These trans fats can literally clog the artery walls and thicken the muscle layer itself, both of which may push up your blood pressure. So, we have developed an oil blend that contains the “good” oils and in the percentage of omega-3 oils that is recommended by the Nutrition Almanac. Fatty peroxides (from heating “cooking” oils) may destroy tissue, including possibly brain tissue.
Eat fats to stay slim
Crazy – but true. All available evidence now points to the need for an abundance of fats in your diet – around 12% by weight (30% by calories). But they must be the “right” fats. That’s why I have gone to the trouble of making my own blend – simply because of the Nutrition Almanac intoning that Australians are only getting 1% of their fats as omega-3s, and yet we need 50% to be healthy! But they must be eaten cold – not heated. That’s why I recommend that you add the blend to salad dressing or folded into my Smoothi blend and the Supasmoothi.
Reduce fats and become obese.
Not only that but low fat intake also has been linked to obesity and poor health. Obesity? Crazy, but true. Fasting from fats puts your body into “famine mode”, where your body craves grains (bread, muffins etc), stores up fats from sugar conversion and burns down muscle protein as energy.* That’s why people on the wrong diets look gaunt and unhealthy – because they are. And they are on a yo yo diet, perpetually hungry and waiting to rebound.
What is bad for you is eating processed fats (margarines) (“trans” fats). In fact, butter and lard are the two most stable forms of fat and are the only fats which should be used for cooking.*
Ordinary, non-cholesterol fats (triglycerides) break down to become what is known as fatty acids. It is a fact that there are several essential fatty acids (“essential” because your body needs them and can’t make them very easily, and you become ill if you can’t get them from food!).
Immune system and fats
Your body uses them to form the kernel of your immune defence and anti-inflammatory and pain-killing repair mechanism. These are called SPMs (or Specific Pro-resolvin Mediators). They are in fact, marketed for naturopaths to recommend and are available now.
These specialised fats comprise over 60-80% of your individual cell walls and control inflammation and immunity. Fat helps the body make good cholesterol, it helps insulate you from cold and adds beauty – have you ever seen an appealing anorexic? It also makes an excellent source of energy. Natural fats form part of your cell walls – muscle cells, brain cells, liver cells – the lot. They form the mechanism which allows nutrients to pass into cells and waste to leave them. (See our discussion on “Fats”)
What “saturated” and “unsaturated” mean
We know that there are unsaturated and saturated fats. What does this mean?
Unsaturated fats are – in the main – essential for the healthy formation of all cell walls, speeding up the unclotting process of blood clot formation, producing health-giving anti-inflammatory prostaglandins. They arise in the organism when it produces the basic unit of the oil, called a fatty acid which then combines with glycerine (a triple alcohol) in a chemical bond known as an ester. These include vegetable oils (such as olive oil) and other plant oils, such a flax-seed (linseed) oil and oils from certain animal species such as fish. Saturated fats also form esters are mainly used for insulation and energy storage and production. These include butter and lard.
Trans fats from heating – worse when unsaturated (See above also)
It happens that unsaturated fats are susceptible to heat and attack by oxygen – as is indeed the original fatty acid itself. There’s always a catch in biology. The better it is for you, the more that its abuse can harm you. And there’s no greater form of abuse on your unsaturated fats than heat under the presence of oxygen. This lethal combination causes the good (“cis”) fatty acid (FA) to be shunted over to the dark side of biology and form a trans fatty acid – with attitude! The attitude comes from an oxygen molecule splitting up under the same intense heat and then latching on to the Trans FA (so becoming a free radicle). This has the potential to cause tremendous damage to the very healthy cell walls that a “cis” FA will help create.
Trans-Fats and Inflammation, Stomach Cancer
So just what is a good source of a free radical, heat-changed, trans fat? Sadly, heating unsaturated oils.
So, that means probably any processed food and many (if not all) margarines.
AND that means basically anything sitting on a supermarket shelf in a packet or cooked in oil. Re-heated oils are a particular problem. For example, Japan has the highest incidence of stomach cancer in the world. This is at odds with its general health record, which shows very low incidences of other cancers and indeed the highest life expectancy. So why stomach cancer? I wonder if it’s got anything to do with its rumoured system of four classes of restaurants? In this case, it is my information that a first class restaurant will pass its used oil on to the second class one, who then sells it to the third class restaurant and so on. I can well imagine that re-heating an oil doubles its chances of free radical attack and inducing a trans configuration. So, by using this system of re-using cooking oil, they are basically quadrupling their chance of introducing toxic fats to their diet.
This process may also add to inflammation in joints and elsewhere.
So, if you must fry foods, do so with butter, lard or ghee. And don't recycle them! But please consume around two dessertspoonsful of a well-prepared oil daily to obtain sufficient omega-3! Eat fresh and eat well! Phil