How to Do a Low Fat Diet and 4 Benefits

Excess fat is one of the causes of dangerous diseases such as heart disease. Some people go on a low-fat diet to lower their risk of this disease.

Actually, what is a low-fat diet and how is it beneficial for health?

What is a low-fat diet?

A low-fat diet is a diet that limits the amount of fat you eat, regardless of its type.

According to the book Low Fat Diet (2022), while on this diet, only 30 percent of calories come from fat.

Generally, this diet aims to lose weight or reduce body cholesterol levels for heart health.

Fat is actually very important for the body, but you need to consume it in limited quantities.

As is commonly known, excess fat intake can increase the body’s cholesterol levels. This is related to the emergence of heart disease and stroke.

Foods consumed in a healthy diet are usually naturally low in fat or even fat-free, such as fruits and vegetables.

How to do a low-fat diet?

In terms of time and meal portions, how to do a low-fat diet is arguably not as strict as other healthy diet methods.

You can follow the regular meal schedule 3 times a day.

Snacks are also allowed as long as you choose low-fat snacks and don’t exceed the recommended fat intake limit.

To make it easier to try a low-fat diet, here are some guidelines to follow.

1. Calculate daily calorie intake

Low-fat diets usually require you to count your calories from your daily macronutrients, namely carbohydrates, protein, and fat.

This needs to be done to help you limit your fat intake to a maximum of 30% of total calories for a day.

According to the Cleveland Clinic website, the average adult needs about 2000 calories a day.

If you are on a fat diet, you only need to get around 600 calories a day from fat.

2. Choose a source of unsaturated fat

You need to understand the types of fat such as saturated fat and unsaturated fat.

It will be better if you choose food sources that contain unsaturated fats.

Some choices of unsaturated fat sources that you can include in the diet menu, namely:

1. fish,
2. avocado,
3. almonds, _
4. canola oil, and
5. biji chia.

These unsaturated fats are called healthy fats because they help lower cholesterol levels.

Conversely, saturated fat contributes to increasing LDL ( low-density lipoprotein ) which can raise cholesterol in the blood.

3. Know the foods that should be consumed and avoided

You also need to know what foods should be consumed and avoided during a fat diet.

Consume various types of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and low-fat proteins such as:

1. call,
2. green vegetables,
3. low-fat milk and its derivatives,
4. whole grain,
5. chicken breast, and
6. egg whites.

Meanwhile, foods that you need to avoid during the fat diet include:

1. full cream milk,
2. processed meat, and
3. food prepared with vegetable oil.

4. Carefully read the nutritional information on food packaging

Having a low-fat diet doesn’t mean you can’t eat packaged food at all.

However, it is important for you to know the number of calories and nutritional content in the packaged food that you will consume.

You can usually see the fat content first on the list after the energy or calorie count on a nutrition information table.

In addition to showing information on the amount of total fat, the nutritional information table lists the amount of saturated fat and unsaturated fat.

The benefits of a low-fat diet

A low-fat diet may run the risk of making you eat more carbohydrates.

However, there are several health benefits that you can get from adopting this low-fat diet. According to Research Square Benefits of a low-calorie diet for type 2 diabetes

1. Lose weight

This eating pattern does not provide diet results in the form of drastic weight loss like a low-carb diet.

However, a low-fat diet helps you limit your calorie intake.

Obese patients generally consume more fatty foods than people with an ideal body mass index.

By following a fat diet, obese patients can reduce their intake of excess calories from fat.

Well, reducing your calorie intake from fat indirectly makes you lose weight slowly.

2. Reducing the risk of heart disease

Fat is an important nutrient that plays a role in building cells and body hormones.

However, excessive intake of fatty foods actually increases levels of bad fats and cholesterol in the blood.

Long-term high cholesterol can lead to heart disease.

So, by going on a low-fat diet, you also contribute to reducing the risk of heart disease.

3. Prevent complications of multiple sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease that attacks the central nervous system characterized by chronic fatigue, balance problems, and tingling or numbness.

In this case, multiple sclerosis patients are advised to eat a balanced nutritious diet, low in fat and high in fiber.

According to a study in the journal Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders (2016), a low-fat diet can help reduce symptoms of chronic fatigue and improve lipid profiles (amount of body fat) in multiple sclerosis patients.

4. Prevent cancer

A low-fat diet is believed to be closely related to the prevention of chronic diseases such as breast cancer, prostate cancer and lung cancer.

Of all these types of cancer, excess saturated fat intake can affect the increased risk of breast cancer.

For this reason, a fat diet can be one way for you to reduce your intake of saturated fats and switch to unsaturated fats to prevent the risk of developing cancer.

A low-fat diet has a number of health benefits. Even so, consult a nutritionist to find out if this diet is suitable for your health condition.

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