Angela Braden has researched and reported on wellness and lifestyle for a decade. She has been published hundreds of times in national and international magazines. Angela serves as a speaker for Alive! Expo (health convention) and as the Editor and Founder of www.angelicindulgence.com web magazine, where youíll find more indulgent health tips and articles updated monthly.
Have your apple pie and eat it, too, with a crash course on ingredients that allow you to have your desserts both ways: healthy and indulgent.
Healthy Sat Fat?
Yet another study has been published recently demonizing saturated fat. But, before you swear off your coconut cream pie and relegate yourself to fat-free deprivation, letís take a closer look. You may decide you can have your cake (in moderation) and protect your health, too.
According to top health insiders, the studies from which some negative conclusions on saturated fat are drawn are consistently critically flawed. This is because they donít take into account healthy saturated fats (like palm, avocado and coconut oils) and donít differentiate between these healthy sat fats and dangerous trans fats. The trans fatty acids used in this recent study are likely responsible for the increase in heart disease risk shown, according to Dr. Joseph Mercola. ďUnfortunately, prejudice has blinded researchers to the benefits of saturated fats in human health,Ē he adds. Dr. Mercola, and many other experts who dig deeper, emphasize that saturated fats are essential parts of all body tissues*. What we need to avoid is trans fats (the real culprit in the heart disease link).
Another reason many of the reports we hear about sat fat (and specifically animal fat) being linked to disease is because of the failure to differentiate between fat from animals raised without toxic chemicals, antibiotics and hormones and fat from those that are pumped full of them. These unnatural substances are stored in the fat cells and could very well be the real reason for the disease link in those scary reports. Doctors who understand these differences specify that full fat dairy (which contains sat fat) from organic cows, raised without steroids, hormones or antibiotics, is in fact, healthy. Organic milk and butter also happen to be prime examples of the healthy version that actually tastes better. See my article on organic meat and dairy at angelicindulgence.com for more details.
The Whole Story
Another key ingredient that can make the difference between a dessert that makes you feel starving and one that leaves you satisfied and savoring the joy of indulgence is whole-grain flour. Instead of refined, white flour, use whole-wheat pastry flour or visit a health food store for brown rice flour or spelt flour. These whole grain alternatives bake well and retain their fiber, protein, and all the good things that are taken out of common white flour. According to Dr. Nicola M. McKeown of Tufts University, "Individuals who incorporate whole-grain foods into their diets may prevent developing the metabolic syndrome, a clustering of risk factors that often precedes type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease." Whole-grains also keep blood sugar better balanced so we donít suffer from the sugar crash and burn routine of white flour. Visit angelicindulgence.com for info on natural sweeteners that can further reduce the sugar-impact of recipes.
So whip up those summer delights with confidence using coconut oil (which can be substituted for shortening), full-fat organic dairy, palm kernel oil and macadamia nut oil (which stands up to high heat when baking), whole grain flours, and natural sweeteners (honey and maple syrup). And fret not when you hear those sat fat-bashing news reports, because you know not all fat is created equal.
*Talk to your doctor if youíve been prescribed dietary restrictions because of a medical condition.
Click here and check out Angela's other healthy tips.
*Opinions expressed are solely those of the writer