Monday, February 6, 2012

Food for Thought - Are You Sabotaging Your Health with What You Eat? Part 1 - Hydrogenated Fats

By Karla Jones Seidita, Home Economist

So, you you're eating pretty healthy.  
That's great!  How are you feeling?

Tired and sluggish?   
Angry for no reason?   
Not on top of your game?
Does your mind wander and you never seem to get anything done?
Are you sad and depressed all the time?
Do pounds creep up not matter how little you eat?
Time to tweak your "healthy" habits.

You've heard the term " you are what you eat"  but you also feel like what you eat.

Some foods, even though we've thought them to be healthy, are really keeping us from feeling good and looking our best.

Hydrogenated (and partially hydrogenated) fats and oils are the number 1 sabotage to an other wise healthy diet.  You can't feel great, look good or loose weight when you eat hydrogenated fats.   It just can't be done!

Hydrogenated fats and oils are manufactured to be solid at room temperature.... like white vegetable shortening (Crisco).  They were invented during World War ll as a substitute for butter at a time when butter was rationed. 

Today, hydrogenated fats are widely used in commercial baked goods because they're cheap and help keep the products from getting stale.  

Home cooks often use hydrogenated fats to make pie crusts, grease pans and fry chicken.... habits passed down from their grandmothers who had become accustomed to using the white vegetable shortening during the 1940's.   

Partially hydrogenated fats and oils are only partially solid at room temperature.  They are used just about everywhere...... snack foods, microwave pop corn, salad dressings and in combination with hydrogenated fats but, in my opinion, are just as bad for the health.

Here's how to minimize (and hopefully eliminate) hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated fats from your diet:

1.  Become a label reader  
Choose products that contain butter, oil and other fats that are not hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated.  When you can't find any, learn to make your own.

2.  Eat less fast food
Fast food is notoriously loaded with hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated fats... only there are no labels to read.

3.  Choose restaurant food with care  
You'll begin to get a sense of what does and does not contain hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated fats from your familiarity with grocery store labels.  Use your knowledge as a guide when eating out.

Get rid of hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated fats and you'll be amazed how quickly you'll feel so much better.... and look so much better!

A healthier diet doesn't have to be difficult and you don't have to make major changes all at once.   Small, easy to manage steps add up to huge results.

Good changes to your diet can be fun, painless and delicious plus you'll be rewarded with good health!

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