Now this is a big topic to take on for a blog entry, so we’re just going to go through some of the basics. Some of this information is gleaned from the Food As Medicine conference with the Center for Mind Body Medicine. More specifically, from Kathie Madonna Swift MS, RDN, LDN, FAND, EBQ.
We need a mix of different types of fat: Omega 9’s (monounsaturated fat), Omega 6’s (linoleic acid) and Omega 3’s (EPA, DHA, and ALA). Some of the things fat is important for are brain and cognitive function, hormone production and function, energy production, and blood sugar regulation.
Here are some examples of different types of fat and suggestions of how to get them in your diet.
Omega 9’s: Avocado, olives, extra virgin olive oil, raw nuts and seeds including nut butters, peanuts (legume)
Omega 6’s: Vegetable oils (corn, cottonseed, grapeseed, safflower, soybean, sunflower), many nuts and seeds, poultry, meat, fish, eggs
Omega 3’s: Fatty fish (salmon, sardines, anchovy, tuna, etc), fish oil supplements, grass-fed/raised animals, soybeans, walnuts, sunflower/flax/hemp/chia seeds.
Most importantly, we need a balance of different types. So don’t overload in one area, including the well known omega 3’s. While they are highly beneficial, balance is key.