The topic of fat in the diet is particularly popular at the moment, with many recommending that we should not view fat as such a sinister macronutrient as we have been led to believe, particularly with reference to its influence on weight management and/or disease. In fact, whilst at one stage we were heavily influenced by the “low-fat” diets, there are now a number of “experts” who are advocating “high-fat” diets.

The problem with nutrition when it is played out in the media is that you typically end up with extremes of the debate. I’m not convinced this is truly helpful, when the sustainable message over time is one of “balance”.

In fact, whilst the debate continues, the real message about fat is often overlooked, if not lost completely.

And it’s this: fat is an important macronutrient in the diet, and we cannot survive without it. It should not be avoided. But nor should it be consumed in excess. Fat should be consumed in the diet from natural food sources, whilst fat from processed and/or fast food options should be avoided.

It’s that simple.

As a result, the message about fat is less about good fat, bad fat, high fat or low fat, but more about adopting eating habits that promote the consumption of a varied food intake that is protein rich, carbohydrate clever, and importantly, is prepared from scratch (so it’s also about reducing the number and amount of processed foods in the diet). In this situation, fat will take care of itself and you don’t need to be lost or confused about whether you are getting it right or not.

At a basic level I’m not sure the message should be anymore complicated than this. Just keep making better food decisions more often and you’ll have a great platform to promote health and activity.

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