There was a time in my life that I didn’t eat fat. I wouldn’t eat fat.
My old motto: Fat makes you fat and there was no way you would put that olive oil on my salad. Never.
And then I grew up, read countless nutrition books, and dived into the world of healthy fats. After one taste of fresh, supple, young, healthy fat-loaded coconut meat, I never looked back.
But it did take me a while before I readily allowed fat to enter my world but once I did, my hair shined, my nails grew stronger, my skin glowed just a bit more, and maybe it’s just in my head but I swear I can think better. 😉
Healthy fats are essential to life, essential to weight loss (yes, it’s true!), and essential to living healthy. Whether you’re living Paleo, vegan, raw, happy, sad, up, down, in Alaska, in Kansas, on a boat, with a goat, with a shoe, in need of a good… um… you get the idea(!), you need fat.
I’m definitely not recommending you drive down to grab a fast foodlookalike as your fat source, but I am recommending you find good ways to incorporate brain-healthy omegas into your diet.
Good fat or omega fatty acid sources are as follows (although there are many, many more):
Flax seeds and oil
Fish might be one of my favorite sources of fats. One bite into my FAVORITE meal of fresh salmon steak slightly crisped and baked to fatty perfection and you’d know why.
And because it’s my favorite meal, I am sharing it with YOU.
Perfect Baked Salmon Steaks
- 1 1/2 – 2″ thick salmon steak(s), center cut*
- sea salt, to lightly cover steak surface
- freshly cracked pepper
- olive oil to lightly coat pan
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Lightly sprinkled salt and pepper onto each side of fish, leaving skin on.
In a medium to large oven-safe skillet, lightly cover pan with olive oil. Heat oil until just starting to pop and add fish.
Sear both sides of salmon for 3.5 minutes, or until the edges and surface are golden and crispy.
Place pan and salmon into the preheated oven and bake, uncovered, for 20-30 minutes, depending on thickness of your salmon steak. Do not over cook!
Remove fish from oven and let sit for 5 minutes before eating.
*May use salmon fillet. Salmon steaks are much more rich in fatty acid and taste incredible!
May also sub any other fish steak for the salmon- such as Mackerel patty, also pictured above.
Need more proof that fat can be a wonderful thing?
Fish fatty acids have many far reaching health benefits and should be included as a part of your balanced diet. These essential fatty acids, primarily omega-3s, must be consumed through diet, as your body does not produce them on its own.
Sources of omega-3s can be ingested either through fatty fish or supplements. Though natural fish consumption is thought to be the best because of the additional nutrients it provides your body, either method of consumption will produce positive results on your long-term health. Fatty fishes include salmon, herring, mackerel, sardines and anchovies, and they should be eaten at least twice a week to bring the following benefits to your body:
Advantage #1: Reduces Cancer Risk
Regular consumption of omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to reduce the risk of several types of cancer by up to 50%, including breast, ovary, prostate, esophagus, colon and oral cancers.
Advantage #2: Reduces Risk of Cardiovascular Disease
Research has shown that by eating fatty fishes twice a week, you can reduce your risk of stroke and heart disease. Eating these fish helps to reduce blood clots, improve blood vessel elasticity, lower blood pressure, boost good cholesterol and lower blood fats, all of which contribute to your improved cardiovascular health.
Advantage #3: Decreases Dementia Risk
Studies have proven that elderly people who eat seafood or fish at least once weekly, have a much lower risk of developing both dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Advantage #4: Helps Manage Diabetes
Regular eating of fatty fish has been shown to help manage blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.
Advantage #5: Helps Relieve Inflammatory Conditions
Eating fatty fish on a regular basis has been proven to assist in relieving some of the symptoms of inflammatory conditions like autoimmune diseases, psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Advantage #6: Improves Brain and Eye Health
A diet rich in omega-3s, the vital nutrient supplied in fatty fish, has been shown to contribute to the health of both brain tissue and the retina.
Advantage #7: Decreases Depression Rates
The omega-3s in fatty fish have been linked to producing lower incidences of depression in those people that regularly consume fish.
Advantage #8: Decreases Asthma Risk
Studies have shown that children who eat fatty fish are much less likely to develop asthma throughout their lives.
With so many health benefits, there is no reason to not increase your consumption of fatty fish. Try different fish and recipes, and experiment with baking, steaming, poaching and grilling the fish! EnJOY fat. 🙂