Get Your Plate in Shape: Cut back on Solid Fats

March is National Nutrition Month (yeah!)  One of the tips I liked in this year’s theme to “get your plate in shape” is – cutting back on solid fats coming from butter, cream, cheese, desserts, pie crusts, sausages, hot dogs, deli meats – these are not everyday food choices.  Solid fats are loaded (LOADED!) with saturated and trans-fat, the latter being deadly (literally) because they lower the good cholesterol (HDL) and raise the bad (LDL). Over time, these fats in excess build up in the bloodstream.  Like a clogged drain (your artery), you need “Drano” (healthy fats from fish, nuts and healthy oils) to do the dirty work and remove the grease (saturated and trans-fats) from the body.  What can you do to reduce solid fats in your diet?  (1) Check the percentages of meats and look for lean cuts.  When you buy ground turkey, beef or any meat – you want >90 percent.  Lean cuts: tenderloin, chuck, sirloin, round, loin chops, legs.  (2) Cut around the fat on meat and remove the skin.  This should be a behavior that happens more often than not.  (3) Replace solid fats with healthy fats, like those found in olive or canola oils, fish oils, legumes, nuts, olives and avocados.  (4) Read labels and keep an eye out for “partially hydrogenated oil” or “vegetable shortening” – a clue that there is trans-fat in a product.  Tomorrow – stay tuned for the scoop on trans-fat.

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