Fats and protein are the 2 essential macronutrients. Specifically, we’re talking about essential fatty acids (EFAs) and essential amino acids (EAAs). These 2 nutrients cannot be manufactured by the body and need to be consumed through your diet.
Not consuming enough of these nutrients will make your weight loss efforts that much more difficult. Your body is going to make sure you get enough of these nutrients, and it will send out strong signals to eat until you do. This is one of the many reasons a nutrient rich diet is necessary for long-term weight loss and maintenance.
Fats aid in the transport and assimilation of fat-soluble vitamins. These vitamins are required for many of the body’s important functions.
Vitamins A, D, E, and K all play specific roles in the body but also have a synergistic effect on fat loss. For example, Vitamin E protects essential fatty acids from being damaged, and EFAs have been shown to aid in weight loss.
Fats help to transport and assimilate fat-soluble vitamins. These vitamins, such as vitamin D, are necessary for the synthesis of fat loss hormones.
Fats have an influence on the digestibility of your food. In particular, they lower the glycemic index of a meal by slowing its digestion. Foods containing fiber have a similar effect.
What happens as a result of eating some fat in a meal is a slower release of glucose into the bloodstream. This helps to keep high insulin levels at bay so that fatty acids can be more easily mobilized and used for fuel.
Fat intake also has an effect on hunger. Getting rid of those hunger pains would make weight loss a whole lot easier.
A diet rich in essential fatty acids has been shown to improve satiety after a meal. Controlling hunger is a major determining factor in successful long term weight loss.
Protein synthesis is essentially the creation of new muscle tissue. Since muscle tissue is metabolically active, it burns extra calories throughout the day and aids in fat loss. There are several ways to increase your rate of protein synthesis.
Eating more protein will accomplish this. Also, consuming carbohydrates improve the rate since they are protein sparing. Finally, the consumption of omega-3 fatty acids has been shown to stimulate protein synthesis in adults.
Studies have also been conducted to see if the supplementation of essential fatty acids in the diet are more beneficial to weight loss. The studies show promise.
In one randomized controlled study, men were either assigned to a group with or without the inclusion of fish oil, which is rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Both groups ate the same amount of calories, but the fish oil group lost over 2 pounds more over the course of 4 weeks.
Healthy fats have a positive effect on your insulin sensitivity]. Better insulin sensitivity is correlated with improved body composition.
Better insulin sensitivity means your body does not need to use as much insulin to transport the glucose to your cells. When insulin is high, growth hormone is low. By muting this insulin response, your body’s fat mobilizing hormones can do their job.
As you can see, fats are not bad for you. Quite the contrary. Not only are they healthy for you, but they will aid you in your weight loss pursuits.
However, keep in mind that not all fats are created equally. Consume a balance of polyunsaturated, monounsaturated, and yes , saturated fats. Avoid foods with trans fats and partially-hydrogenated oils in the ingredients. These fats will do the exact opposite of what you’re trying to accomplish.