Sunday, September 18, 2011

Want Some Good News? Eat Dark Chocolate and Burn Fat

We all need some good news and anytime chocolate and good news are in the same sentence, it's got to be earth shattering. If you're like me, you love chocolate and crave it more than any other food. Unfortunately, until recently chocolate was one of the many foods banned on all diets.


Yep. Hooray for science and its related research! They've discovered that the super dark chocolate that's the best (and most expensive) is good for us, along with some other previously forbidden fatty foods. Most of us spend a significant amount of time feeling guilty about eating the foods we love. Included in our "loved" foods are usually not only chocolate but also, fatty foods like nuts and butter. Researchers have determined that many people crave foods because they are "forbidden," but now, these same researchers have decided that our bodies actually need these foods that we crave because of the health benefits they provide.


Before science presented us with hope, many people, like me, ate these fatty foods because our bodies seemed to never be satisfied without them. So, we ate what we thought were the "bad fatty foods" for a while and then went on a crash diet that prohibited all food with a decent taste. We lost a few pounds and felt proud. But like its name, this diet quickly "crashed and burned" and we went back to eating fatty foods again. Which, turns out to be a good thing if the amount of fatty food is controlled.

The key to being able to eat the good kind of fatty foods and still lose weight is the amount of fat that goes into our bodies. The good fats are essential, but not in unlimited amounts. There's always a catch, right? Science is trying to help us out here.

To lose weight and keep it off, research says to not eliminate all fats or fatty foods. You need some of the healthy fats, like olive oil, unpasteurized butter, nuts and best of all: chocolate. Your body needs fat and fatty foods for hormonal balance. A little fat also works wonders for controlling blood sugar and food cravings. Thank goodness!


Eliminating all fats and fatty foods from your diet actually does harm to your body. If you want to lose fat and flab, otherwise known as "weight," eat some healthy fat to help burn fat. Sounds strange, doesn't it, but that's the way our bodies are designed. Of course, the trick to eating the right amount of fat or fatty foods is to make sure that the fat you are consuming is the right kind of fat.


What are the "right" kinds of fat to eat? Amazingly, nearly everyone likes healthy fats, so it's not a hard sell to convince someone to eat the healthy fats described below:

Nuts: any and every kind of nut is healthy and should be the non-roasted variety to get the greatest nutritional value. Nuts have high levels of micronutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. They are a good source of fiber and protein, which helps control blood sugar. Nuts are high calorie items, so measure nuts before they hit your mouth. Most people consume more nuts than they realize because they taste so good. They are one of those things that you can eat and they taste so good, that you have a few more, and suddenly you've consumed almost a thousand calories.

Coconut: whether it's the meat or the milk of the coconut, is great and great for you.

Butter: real, unpasteurized butter found in some food and most health stores.

Whole Eggs: The yolk is the healthiest part. Did you know that almost all of the vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants (such as lutein) are found in egg yolks? Also, egg yolks contain more than 90% of the calcium, iron, phosphorus, zinc, thiamin, B6, foliate, B12, and pantothenic acid needed for healthy bodies? In addition, the yolks of eggs contain ALL of the fat soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K in the egg, as well as ALL of the essential fatty acids.Eggs are often called the "perfect source of protein." They are low in calories, (less than 100 calories per egg) and they're much cheaper to buy than most other good fatty foods.

Beef: must be the grass-fed beef or bison varieties; the typical corn and grain fed beef is prohibited. Grass-fed beef or bison have much higher levels of healthy omega-3 fats and lower levels of inflammatory omega-6 fats, and also higher prices. Corn and grain fed beef do not have these same nutritional qualities. Grass fed meats also typically contain up to 3 times more Vitamin E than grain fed meats.

Avocados: Not only is this fruit (yes, surprisingly, avocados are actually a fruit) super-high in monounsaturated fat, but also full of vitamins, minerals, micro-nutrients, and antioxidants.The healthy fats, fiber, and micronutrients in avocados helps your body maintain proper levels of hormones to help with fat loss and muscle building. Also, since avocados are an extremely satisfying food, eating them makes you feel full longer.If you can't find fresh avocados, look for the packaged guacamole that is normally readily available in most food stores. Check the label for contents and don't buy if the contents include words you can't pronounce or never heard of. That usually means additives and fillers have been added.

Chocolate: What could be better? If you're a woman, you probably crave chocolate and will do just about anything to have at least a couple of small pieces. Guess What? This is actually O.K. if you limit yourself to two small squares of super dark chocolate (a minimum of 72% cacao) daily. Because the intensity of super dark chocolate is so great, you will probably not want much more than the two small squares. You'll only get about 40-50 calories out of the chocolate and that's a real calorie deal compared to nuts

If you're a gram counter, 75 grams daily of healthy fats is the rule of thumb to still lose weight.

Of course, all diets must contain the requisite fruits, vegetables and some whole grains. To vary your diet, you also need to eat some lean meats, poultry, fish (fatty salmon is best) and some cheeses and yogurt.


Every dieter eventually learns what the good fats and the bad fats are. Up until recently, we all thought of the bad fats as the only decent food because bad fats include great foods like ice cream, cookies, chips, desserts and takeout food. Research has now determined that we like these bad foods because they are packed with overly processed sugars and fats that are designed to make us want to eat more of them. They are essentially addictive and contribute significantly to our obesity problems, especially in children. Once you lose your addiction to processed foods and the "bad" fats, you'll start to crave the good fats. Thank goodness research has found that good fats actually help burn the bad fats, while satisfying our longings for what we consider "favorite foods." When you and your family are considering snacks, think of

natural peanut butter,
pumpkin seeds,
flax seeds,
all kinds of nuts and
dark chocolate.

Food is changing for the better when you can enjoy chocolate without feeling guilty. Thank you Researchers!

Karo Zerr is a health research expert dedicated to helping others live full, productive lives while enjoying good health. She has several websites dedicated to health and all include free bonus-no obligation e books or mini courses.


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