Posts Tagged ‘weight gain’

Fats: Why Do We Crave Them?

May 5th, 2010

Why do we crave fats? It is one of evolutions’ little tricks. In prehistoric times fats were a rare commodity and hard to come by, so nature made them taste extra good to entice our ancestors to gorge themselves once they finally got their hands on it. The impulse stayed wired in our brain. It worked great then – not so now.

Nowadays, we do not have to rummage trough prehistoric terrain looking for rare scraps of meat and climbing trees to get oil rich food. Industrialization of food industry, one of civilizations’ great marvels, has provided us with local manufacturing centers, responsible for production and distribution of groceries at our convenience, fat rich food included. What was once rare, endemic and seasonal is now readily available all year long in our friendly supermarket.

While this is one of great advantages of modern society, it is also proving to be a double edged sword. While on one hand, food supply is rich and plentiful, on the other hand it presents a consumer with a great number of fat rich products, which time and time again proves to be too much of a temptation. We do try, but it is a tricky business with many hidden traps. If we pass on that nice fragrant cheese, chunky ice cream and luscious cream spread, odds are we will go for butter, cookies and yes, chocolate. We are, after all, only human.

Following the logic of this article so far, we could make an argument – it was not me – my body made me do it. It did. However, while our body operates on wired and ingrained instincts, it is the brain that controls its actions.  Our decision making process and all actions we take on daily basis are controlled by our conscious mind. So who is the one that really reaches for that chocolate? Our body? Or us? The answer is obvious. It is us. And realistically, cravings will always exist and influence our choices. But we can try to do our best not to give into them on such a frequent basis that will endanger our health.

The fact that there are so many tasty and fat ridden foods and groceries available does nothing to help the fact that fats are here to stay and temp us to no end. Fats are found in meats, milk and dairy products, bacon, oils, lard, butters, margarine,  snacks, cookies, whipped cream, even bread, nuts and seeds, doughnuts,  our favorite movie snacks –popcorn and nachos, chocolate, cake cream filing, ice cream, pre-made cake mixes, puddings, whipped cream, chocolate spreads, ready mixes and many many more. In fact, it is becoming quite hard to avoid them.

The good news we do not have to avoid them, just reduce the intake to a recommended level. Mind over matter. Make smart choices. Certain fats are better than others and taken in regulated amounts can be beneficial. It is all matter of dosage. Too little fat and we can compromise some metabolic functions.  Too much and we compromise our health and our life. Generally unsaturated fats are the way to go and everything else should be avoided like a plague.

For more guidelines on recommended fat intake and  low fat high protein alternatives, consult your local health food distributor,Herbal Diet today.

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