In the past 30 plus years we have all been brainwashed into thinking that a low fat diet is a healthy way of eating. There has been been so much press coverage about the dangers of eating fat, in particular saturated fat, that many people now think that all fats are bad for them. This is not true. A low-fat diet is actually not a good idea at all – your body needs fat and your skin needs fat to stay healthy. A low-fat diet will also age your skin prematurely! However, it’s crucial to eat the right types of fat to reap the benefits. So what are good fats and what are bad fats? It’s not what you might think it is.
Highly beneficial fats are for example monounsaturated fats, think olive oil, which also contains polyphenolic antioxidants. Most of you will know this. However, good quality saturated fat is not a problem either (if eaten without all the rubbish usually coming along with a Western high saturated fat diet!). Saturated fat has been demonised unfairly in my opinion. In fact, saturated fats are highly stable, great for cooking and play a vital part in each and every organ in our body. You see, as our cell membranes mainly consist of saturated fatty acids, saturated fats are crucial for cell physiology.
Studies have even confirmed that eating a diet higher in overall fat content, but also higher in saturated fat is associated with higher skin elasticity and less wrinkling of the skin. So make sure to include plenty of good fats such as avocados, nuts, olive oil, omega-3 rich fish, but also organic animal fats in your diet, as they are all important for healthy skin.
What you want to avoid on the other hand are unstable, pro-inflammatory, omega-6 rich vegetable seed oils such as sunflower oil, soya oil, corn oil, canola oil, safflower oil etc. And the worst thing you can do is use them for cooking, as they are highly unstable.