This quick guide to the benefits of low-carbohydrate eating comes from the Defeat Diabetes app.
In order to burn fat for fuel, we need to switch off insulin which promotes fat storage and inhibits fat breakdown.
As you can see from the accompanying graph, eating carbohydrates causes a sharp rise in the production of insulin, protein considerably less so, while ingestion of fat is associated with minimal insulin production.
So it makes sense to eat a low-carb, moderate-protein, high-fat diet. If you reduce your carbohydrate intake to less than 30-50 grams a day, the body switches from using glucose as its major fuel source to using fat in the form of ketone bodies, hence the term ketogenic or "keto" diet.
Hear more from Dr Brukner on the Voice of Real Australia podcast
So, if you want to have a high fat intake, which fats should be prioritised?
We have always been told that saturated fats were the problem. But this is no longer considered to be true. It is the polyunsaturated Omega-6 fats that are the problem.
The major source of these unhealthy Omega-6 fats is vegetable oils or, as they should more accurately be called, seed oils. When these oils are heated they are oxidised and give off toxic substances which damage the body's cells.
So if you want to burn fat for fuel, here's what you should do: 1) Reduce carbohydrate intake below 50 grams a day; 2) Maintain moderate protein intake; 3) Increase your intake of healthy fats and decrease consumption of vegetable oils.
Healthy fats: Meat, fish, seafood, dairy, eggs, nuts/seeds, avocados, olive oil, coconut oil, butter, lard, beef tallow, duck fat.
Unhealthy fats: vegetable (seed) oils, including canola, sunflower, corn, cottonseed, soy, safflower, grapeseed, rice bran oil; margarine; processed foods containing vegetable oils, such as dips, mayonnaise, canned fish in oil, hot chips, fried food, sliced bread, bakery goods.
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