The Healthy Fats Every Diet Needs

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Not all fats are bad for you. In fact, healthy fats can keep your skin looking younger and plumper. Fats are also a great way to nourish the body and keep you feeling fuller longer. I’ve learned a lot about healthy and food from nutritionist and chef Tricia Williams of Food Matters NYC and Daily Dose. We asked her to share her insights when it comes to the best sources of good fats.

ANIMAL FATS

There is a shift happening in the health food movement to return to eating and cooking the way traditional cultures did. Cooking with schmaltz (chicken fat) or tallow (beef or mutton fat) are great ways to support the body. Chicken is full of oleic acid, which helps nourish the skin. Beef tallow has a high content of CLA (Conjugated linoleic acid), which has been shown to reduce heart disease and the risk of cancer. It also has high levels of vitamin A and E and is a great source of omega-3s.

COCONUT OIL

Coconut oil is a great way to nourish the body. It’s a medium- chain fatty acid, meaning it can take high heat in cooking without becoming unstable (unlike olive oil). This delicious oil is easily absorbed by the small intestine, delivering more energy than any other fat. It is anti- viral, antimicrobial, and has immune- boosting properties.

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OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS

These are key to beauty from the inside out. They are anti-inflammatory, reducing inflammation under the skin’s surface. They restore moisture to the skin and can help slow down the aging process. Delicious sources for omega-3s are wild salmon, avocados, walnuts, and chia seeds.

MEAT (RESPONSIBLY RAISED)

Responsibly raised pasture meats are a good source of healthy fats. If you get fats from meat, choose versions that are free of antibiotics, so you get the full benefits. Williams says, “Examples of healthy meats are grass-fed lamb, bison, grass-fed beef, chicken, and duck. The meat doesn’t necessarily need to be lean. Full fat in small quantities is good for you."

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OLIVES AND OLIVE OIL

These are rich sources of vitamins A and E, which are important skin-protecting vitamins. They help strengthen the connective tissues in the body, help improve the appearance of skin, and help protect against UV radiation.

NUT AND SEED OILS

These oils can help you look younger. I love oils that are higher in vitamin K and E, such as almond oil, macadamia nut oil, pumpkin seed oil, and grapeseed oil.

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