A lot of what the so-called “experts” have told you about nutrition is wrong.
Take trans fats, for instance. Back in the early 1980s, coconut oil was in practically everything. It was cheap, easy to use, and the foods it was in tasted good.
Then the experts came along. We had to stop using coconut oil, they said. It’s full of saturated fat… and it’ll wreck our hearts. Instead, they told us, use “healthy” trans fats.
The cure turned out to be far worse than the disease. Trans fats raise LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels and lower HDL (“good”) cholesterol. Plus, the saturated fat in coconut oil doesn’t act like animal fat. Studies suggest it’s good for your heart.
That’s just one of many missteps the “experts” have made over the years. Here’s another whopper they’ve been telling you for decades…
A Calorie Is a Calorie Is a Calorie
Uncle Sam’s nutrition experts have it down to a science. The “average person” needs about 2,000 calories a day. Eat much more than that, and an average person will gain weight. Eat a bit less, and they’ll drop some weight.
Of course, your size and metabolism make a difference. But it’s a good average. Beyond that, a calorie is just a calorie.
Except it isn’t. Because different foods have different “side effects.”
For example, sugars and starches raise blood sugar. This can lead to weight gain. Even if you’re not eating too many calories. It’s just that too many of them are from the wrong source.
Fructose and high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) have a different effect. Your body processes them differently from other sugars. Fructose won’t cause blood sugar spikes. But that’s because it’s processed through your liver.
Your liver converts a lot of the fructose you eat into stored fat. Which is not what happens with other sugars. So foods with added fructose – which includes just about everything in a package these days – tend to pack on the pounds.
The end result? 100 calories from spinach have a very different effect than 100 calories from spaghetti or foods with added HFCS.
But the news isn’t all bad. Some foods are high in fat and calories, but deliver remarkable side effects. Look at avocados…
Lots of Fat… Lots of Calories… and Lots of Benefits
The latest news about avocado just came out. A review in the journal Phytotherapy Research found avocados may help battle metabolic syndrome – or “pre-diabetes.”
Besides promoting healthy cholesterol levels, avocado appears to lower triglyceride (blood fat) levels… fight high blood pressure… support artery health… promote weight loss… and much more.
In 2016, Air Force researchers reviewed 10 avocado studies. They found solid evidence that swapping avocado for other fats led to healthier blood fat levels. Triglycerides, total cholesterol and LDL levels all dropped when people began eating avocados.
Researchers at Ohio State University showed avocado has an unusual health effect. It helps you absorb some key nutrients.
In this study, people who ate avocado boosted absorption of lutein by more than 5x. And they absorbed Beta-carotene more than 15x better. Both these nutrients are key to maintaining healthy vision. Which makes adding a little avocado to your salad a great way to defend your eyesight.
Other recent studies suggest avocados may help protect nerve cells from damage… could have unique cancer-fighting powers… and may promote weight loss and healthy aging.
So don’t always accept “expert” advice at face value. Low-fat and low-calorie don’t always mean “healthy.” Sometimes guilty pleasures – like avocados – turn out to be a better option.
About the Author: Jason Kennedy is a celebrated investigative health writer and the author of The X-Factor Revolution and Beyond the Blue Zone. With over 10 years of experience working with today’s leading alternative and anti-aging doctors, Jason shares his insider status and access to the latest breakthroughs with thousands of readers from around world.
“Avocados May Help Combat the Metabolic Syndrome,” Wiley News Room. Apr 10, 2017.
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Ameer, K., “Avocado as a Major Dietary Source of Antioxidants and Its Preventive Role in Neurodegenerative Diseases,” Adv Neurobiol. 2016; 12: 337-354.
Ding, H., et al, “Selective induction of apoptosis of human oral cancer cell lines by avocado extracts via a ROS-mediated mechanism,” Nutr Cancer. 2009; 61(3): 348-356.
Dreher, M.L. and Davenport, A.J., “Hass Avocado Composition and Potential Health Effects,” Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition. 2013; 53: 738–750.
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