Hey guys, So I recently went vegan (all the time) /superhero (most of the time) and my mom is really worried that I am not getting enough oils in my diet. I have been trying to eat the right balance of greens, grains, proteins, and I think that I am doing pretty good but I want to double check and make sure that I am getting enough of what I need. Do you guys think that you could give me some examples of healthy superhero oils/fats and how much you should be eating in a day? Thanks so much!
Olive oil is probably one the best oils you can add to your diet, safflower oil is good when you don't want a rich taste which Olive oil gives. Both are full of MUFA's (monounsaturated fatty acids) which are heart healthy and not artery clogging. Also, avocado, nuts (esp. walnuts, almonds) are great for you and give you the good fats and Omega 3's. I have a great peanut butter recipe if you like that. It is all natural and doesn't get the oil on the top. If you sautee with oil and add nuts and seeds to meals (salads, oatmeal etc.) you are probably getting enough. Only a little is required. Hope this helps. I have been following a MUFA diet for nearly a year, so I am pretty acquainted with healthy fats.
Hi Sarah and Jen, A plant based diet will provide all the fats and fat precursors that your body needs. There is simply no need to eat oil. It is not healthful in of itself, but can make many foods more palatable. For those eating oil, there is a tendency to get too much omega 6 and not enough omega 3. This causes the imbalance that requires the supplementation of something like flax. For those eating lots of saturated fat and have high cholesterol, less harmful so-called heart healthy fats are suggested as a substitute. There is no better diet for longevity, than one that minimizes oils and concentrated fat.
Thanks for the question Sarah, In reality almost all whole plant foods contain fats. They exist in small amounts compared with animal based foods. Even romaine lettuce is a great source of healthy epa fats that our bodies convert to make the lipids (omega) we need. Fat rich plant foods like the ones you mentioned can be added if more fat is desired but are not required to maintain health. Oils are yummy and are often added to recipes, but they are unnecessary for health maintenance. Most westerners get too much fat, which is easy to do if you eat a significant amount of oil. It has 4000 calories a pound and no other nutrients. It is included in processed foods and often adulterated to increase it's shelf life. The consequences of eating the worst fats are somewhat muted by adding better fats. Minimizing fats promotes the proper function of the body. p.s. they are addicting because they are so yummy. Justin
Justin, I just showed your response to my mom and she FREAKED out. You see, when I was younger I developed a really serious eating disorder (which I have recovered from) and my mom is opposed to my veganism because she thinks that it encourages an overly restrictive mindset. She thinks that my tendency is to undereat and minimize fat consumption. I definitely eat enough healthy vegan foods and I try to have a diverse diet. But my mom thinks that I am unhealthy. You are the only person that I have ever heard say that lettuce can provide your body with the appropriate amount of fat. My mom keeps insisting that a lack of fat can result in nerve and brain damage. What should I do?
Hi Sarah, I can't tell you what to do, my mom freaks out on me constantly (she wants me to eat lamb). If your body mass index is in the normal range and you are not at risk for a relapse, you should be able to minimize your oil intake with little weight loss. Check out the relative percentage of calories from fat of your favorite foods. Show your mom that you are eating lots of whole foods. Reassure her that you are not trying to loose weight. Go with the superhero plan, it is exceptionally balanced from a nutritional standpoint. good luck, Justin
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