Friday, November 26, 2010

Fats, Good and Bad

Fat is a topic that most Americans misunderstand completely, and for good reason. The misinformation about fat is abundant. The bulk of the information readily available to the masses is misleading and incorrect. It is hardly any wonder why we have so much obesity and other fat related diseases, let alone a national health crisis. Americans think that they are following current medical standards for healthy eating to avoid diseases like diabetes, obesity, and heart disease, by eating margarine instead of butter. That’s “common knowledge” in our society, marketed to you as truth all day long, and it’s also completely wrong.

Advertising says if you want to lose weight, eat low fat food, or avoid fat altogether. Fat is touted as one of the biggest evils in food, especially saturated fat from animals. The hook is that most of those “low-fat” foods have been stripped of healthy fats, processed into less nutritious but prettily packaged fake food with a fancy label, and they actually make you want to eat more because you have just malnourished yourself with hollow (nutritionless) calories. It doesn’t matter how much they fortify the food because that “nutrition” isn’t readily absorbable. Do you know what happens when the body is deprived of fat? Dysfunction, disease, and ultimately death will be your rewards for avoiding fat. Fat-free diets are an absolute, sure route to failure of health.

Let’s say you followed the “advice” out there about only consuming lean meats and avoiding fats in general. Want to know what the outcome is? As demonstrated by early Arctic explorers, you die. It’s known as the “rabbit starvation” diet. Because fats are a critical part of digestion and peristalsis (along with every other function in your body,) your system shuts down because it doesn’t have the proper fuel to run on. Without fat you will still starve to death from malnutrition. But don’t worry- you will go crazy with mental illness before you die because your brain is comprised of about 60% fat. Everything else in your diet could be great, but without the proper fats, it’s meaningless to your body and your brain. Every cell in your body is literally dependent on and composed of fat. You must eat good fat for life.

Unfortunately, we Americans have devised ways to destroy perfectly good fats and still market them as healthy. We like to uphold fake foods as our brilliant human achievement over nature, but we are also very proud of extending shelf life by destroying the nutrition in food. As if it’s better to have disease causing foods that you can consume with just as many non-health benefits tomorrow as today than to have healthy food that perishes!

Trans fats are bad for you in any quantity, whereas you must over-consume saturated fats before they are a problem. Trans fats are man made through heavy processing and do not exist without our manufacture. They interfere with our bodies’ ability to use the good fats, getting in the way without providing the services our bodies need from the good fats. They are useless calories that actually detract from nutrition, health and well-being. Trans fats weaken our cell walls, which are made of fat, and allow all kinds of things in that don’t belong in healthy cells. We are then left with guaranteed disease. Trans fats are a form of health indebtedness, and a good way to wound your self if not outright commit suicide. There is no medical doubt that what they do is inflict harm upon the body. Every time you choose to eat trans fats, you are choosing ill health. Trans fats block normal biochemistry, disrupt electrical circuitry, and inhibit enzyme function for the body’s normal synthesis of fatty acids and cholesterol. (Cholesterol is another substance largely misunderstood by Americans at large, and another nutritional component that you will die without.) Hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils, shortenings and margarines are all trans fats.

You have to be a conscientious consumer through and through. It’s not just the real, raw food that contains naturally good fats, but also how that food is “minimally” processed that affects the quality of the fats. Extracting oils from plants using heat creates lower quality fats with negative health reactions. For instance, refined corn, sunflower and safflower oils all contribute to cancer because they lower HDL. Generally, you want to find organic, unrefined, cold pressed oils for the best health results. Oils go rancid quickly because they are a perishable food. Once oil is rancid it is also poisonous. Rancid oils add to free radical cell damage, interrupt normal metabolism, and contribute to mental cloudiness. Store all your oils in the fridge to help prevent rancidity and replace them after a couple of months. Look for expiration dates and shorten them on your own, or better yet, purchase oils directly from the farms where the food was grown for the most nutritious freshness.

After purchase, then comes home operator handling. Cooking is also heating. Heating your oils not only destroys all the nutritional benefits (the wonderful Vitamin E in Grape seed oil, for example, gets lost through cooking) but also creates the exact kinds of fats that will harm you. Heat causes oxidization of oil fats, quickly turning them into bad for you fats. If your oil wasn’t rancid out of age or refinement, you will make it rancid by incorrectly cooking it. Olive oil is great for you, but ONLY if you treat it correctly. Not only is it the most well advertised fat as good for you, it is the easiest to destroy with heat. Always cook over the lowest heat possible. Never cook anything higher than medium heat, and make your preference low or medium low heat. The lower the heat, the longer the cook time. If your fats are smoking, you are creating toxins through oxidization, and your heat is too high. Don’t deep fry- ever. Don’t brown, especially not to a crisp! Frying foods in vegetable oils such as corn or soy or safflower creates HNE, a toxic compound linked to atherosclerosis, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, stroke, and liver disease. Oxidized fats cause stunted growth, hair loss, skin lesions, emaciation, anorexia, diarrhea, and intestinal hemorrhaging. It is best to add oils to your foods after cooking, removing foods from the heat source first, or just consume them “cold.” Use only a tablespoon or less of oil to cook with. Preferably, cook with coconut, then sesame, and then olive oil. Mix oils for cooking with half butter.

Butter not only has good for you fats, it also has nutritional values like Vitamins A and D along with cancer fighting butyric acid. (If casein is a problem, use ghee, which is clarified butter.) Butter is always safer to cook with than any oil. When in doubt, just cook with lard. Lard is the most stable fat for cooking with the most health benefits for your body. Saturated fats are good for you in the right amounts. It is better to cook with animal fats than oils because animal fats do not transform into bad fats from oxidation as easily or quickly as those from vegetables.

A word of caution about choosing your animal fats for consumption- IF the animal has had a toxic life, then that toxicity will be passed onto you. Toxins are stored in fat, including hormones, antibiotics, and other chemicals forced onto the animals by industrial farming techniques. You must look for organic sources. And please, if you’re going to eat butter with salt added, make sure there is no flow agent used because that is also a toxin. In other words, it’s only the things that man does to the animal that make the animal fats bad for you, whereas healthy animals have fats that are good for you.

This kind of accurate health information shouldn’t be so hard to find. Every American should have access to health knowledge readily, without having to become a specialist in the field. I really wish that our national health would be more important than the profits of large companies that are “too big to fail.” Profits made by selling you products with false claims and deleterious health effects. You pay once for the product with money, then again for the choice with your illnesses from consumption- illnesses that in turn create lots of financial problems for the individual, his/her family, and our entire nation. Personally, I can’t believe it’s still legal to sell margarine, let alone advertise it as healthy. But hey, let’s keep making fake food, tainting our real food with poisons and nurturing our national health crisis through massive mis-education while blaming animal fat as the problem. I’m so glad we have our national priorities in order.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Apple Pineapple Pumpkin Bake


1 medium sugar pie pumpkin

2 Granny Smith apples

1 cup of pineapple

½ cup raisins

¼ cup walnuts

¼ cup honey

½ stick butter

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 tablespoon fresh ginger minced

1 teaspoon Celtic sea salt

1 teaspoon lemon juice


Large glass baking dish or bowl

Cutting board, large knife and paring knife

Scrub brush

Apple peeler

Dry measuring cups and spoons

Butter knife

Dinner fork



Citrus reamer and 2 small glass bowls


* Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

*Wash pumpkin with brush, cut off top and set aside, deseed. Place pumpkin in a large glass baking bowl or dish for cooking, just in case in ruptures.

*Peel and cut apples and pineapple into cubes. Cut butter into slices. Mince ginger and mix with spices and salt.

*Fill pumpkin three quarters of the way to the top with fruit, nuts, raisins, sliced butter, spices, lemon juice and honey.

*Replace top on pumpkin and bake for an hour to three, or until you can pierce the top with a fork and spoon out the flesh, or it caves in! It will be a toasty brown on the outside. Cooking time varies depending on the cavity size and wall thickness of your pumpkin.

*Serve in the pumpkin (do not try to transfer from your baking dish) as a table centerpiece. Scoop out pumpkin flesh and fruit filling into bowls.

Tips: Choosing a redder colored pumpkin is best, and sugar pie pumpkins are smaller than the ones you get for carving. Wash and dry your pumpkin seeds overnight to bake tomorrow.