LOW FAT DIET
The Ultimate Guide (2020)
This is a complete guide to the Low Fat Diet in 2020. You will learn why and how exactly to change to Low Fat Diet. You will also take a closer look at some celebrities that eat low-fat.
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So, let’s dive straight into the article!
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What is a Low Fat Diet?
A low-fat diet plan is an eating plan, which is low in total fat, unhealthy fats, and cholesterol.
If you are a person who has trouble digesting and absorbing fat or you have high cholesterol the low-fat diet is ideal for your needs!
What is a Low Fat Diet?
As the name of the diet suggests, a low-fat diet is a diet, which restricts your fat intake from foods like cheese, butter, and eggs. The idea behind the diet is simple. Less fat in your food means less fat in your body, right? It seems intuitive. However, there are a couple of things you should know before starting the diet
As you already guessed Low-Fat meal plan is the right plan for you if your goal is losing weight. Cutting most of the unhealthy fats (there are also healthy fats, which we will discuss later) leads to fewer calories consumed.
Fats are the most calorie macronutrient from the three (protein, carbohydrates, and fats).
- 1 gram of Protein has 4 calories
- 1 gram of Carbohydrates has 4 calories
- 1 gram of Fats has 9 calories
As you can see Fats are more than double than the energy content of the other 2 macros.
Cutting out fats leads to reaching your dream weight faster than ever and maintaining it for long.
- Keep in mind that losing weight is only possible if you consume fewer calories than your burn (calorie deficit)
You are probably wondering whether you have to minimize your fat intake to 0%. You don’t have to be that extreme!
From a nutritional point of view, dietary fats are important for several health-related aspects and the optimal functioning of the human body. Dietary fats are not just a source of energy:
- they function as structural building blocks of the body
- carry fat-soluble vitamins,
- are involved in vital physiological processes in the body
- are indispensable for several important biological functions including growth and development.
Dietary guidelines from the World Health Organization and the Dietary Reference Intakes recommend a total fat intake between 20 and 35% of total calories. That’s about 44 to 77 grams of fat a day if you eat 2,000 calories a day.
There is a difference between “good” and “bad” fats.
Bad fats are all:
- Saturated fats
Saturated fatty acids are found in both plant and animal sources.
They are found in animal products like meat, butter, and cream. They are also found in a few plant sources such as coconut oil and palm oil. Saturated fats are often listed as “bad” fats and are commonly grouped with trans fats. However, the topic is quite controversial because studies support both sides.
For example, according to one study from, where cows are grass-fed, individuals who ate the most high-fat dairy products had a 69% lower risk of death from cardiovascular disease, compared to those who ate the least.
Several other studies agree with this… in countries where cows are largely grass-fed (like many European countries), high-fat dairy products are associated with a reduced risk of heart disease
- Trans fats
Trans Fats are unsaturated fats that have been processed to make their life longer. They usually show up on food labels as “hydrogenated” or “partially hydrogenated” oils. Trans fats can be found in fried foods, so stay away from everything fried.
If a nutrition label shows “0 grams” of trans fat, but the ingredient list shows “partially hydrogenated oil,” the food does contain trans fat. The amount is simply less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving.
So, if you eat more than the serving size, you are over your daily trans fat limit (your daily trans fat intake should be around 1% of your calories. If you consume 2000 calories you can eat 2 grams of trans fat).
Saturated fats are hard to avoid unless you are a vegan (you consume neither dairy products nor meat). If that’s not the case with you, stick to low-fat or non-fat dairy products and choose lean proteins. Check our article about the difference between a plant-based diet and a vegan diet.
The Trans Fats, however, should be avoided in general health and especially if you are on the low-fat diet.
Good fats are all unsaturated fats:
- Polyunsaturated fats
They are found in nuts, seeds, and fish, and are a good source of vitamin E and omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
- Monounsaturated fats
They come from plant sources, such as olives, avocados, and nuts. These fats are usually liquid at room temperature (think olive and canola oil).
Your daily intake of fats (20-35%) should come from these two types of fats. When you stick to foods like:
you are making a favor to your body because you give it the better fats. Your body is your temple, right? Keep the temple strong and stable and it will be grateful. Healthy fats will come from fats as the fats in the plant-based diet.
Now, you can easily differentiate between good and bad fats on your next trip to the market.
The minimum of 20% is to ensure adequate consumption of total energy, essential fatty acids, and again fat-soluble vitamins and prevent atherogenic dyslipidemia (low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), high triglyceride-rich lipoproteins) which occurs with low-fat, high carbohydrate diets and increases the risk of coronary heart disease.
The maximum of 35% was based on limiting saturated fat and also the observation that individuals on higher-fat diets consume more calories, resulting in weight gain.
To sum up, being on a Low Fat Diet Plan is essential for reducing weight, keeping your cholesterol low (Check out our Low Cholesterol Diet), and reducing the risk of heart attack.
Now, let’s see Why is that important?
Why Low Fat Diet?
You have learned the meaning of the diet.
However, now you have to learn WHY to choose the low-fat diet plan instead of other meal plans.
A Low Fat Diet can have a positive impact on a person’s heart, weight, and overall well-being.
Read Chapter 2 to find out more!
Why Low Fat Diet?
So, why following a low-fat diet? You can follow a low-fat diet for medical reasons. If you suffer from digestive disorders such as gastroparesis (bloated belly) or gallbladder disease low-fat plans are recommended.
In these conditions, the body is less able to break down or absorb fatty foods. In other cases, eating fatty foods can aggravate diarrhea.
Another benefit of the diet is the reduced risk of a heart attack.
Sticking to whole-grain foods such as quinoa spaghetti or whole-grain bread and replacing refined carbs such as pasta and white bread is a good choice for keeping your heart rate normal.
Veggies and fruits are also emphasized when following a low-fat diet plan.
Here is a list of 7 low-fat foods:
Fruits are an excellent option for a snack. Have you heard that if you want to have a taste of something sweet, you have to grab an apple?
Keep in mind that almost all fruits are:
Low in fat
High in vitamins and minerals
High in fibers
They also protect your cells against radical damage
You can enjoy fruits dried, fresh, cooked or even add them to smoothies or your favorite salad!
Sweet potatoes are a root vegetable with a minimum amount of fat per serving. They contain around 1,4 grams of fat per one medium potato.
Sweet potatoes are not only very filling because of the high percentage of fiber, but also contain some vitamins such as:
They are also high in potassium (bodybuilders love potassium before stage), manganese and are rich in minerals.
Their bright orange color is due to high amounts of beta-carotene, which is a plant pigment known to protect against the cell damage caused by free radicals.
Beta-carotene is beneficial for the eyes. Another “eyes” food is carrots.
An interesting fact about mushrooms is that they don’t fall into any group. They are neither fruits nor vegetables, animal product or grain.
However, let’s begin with some more beneficial facts about them. Mushrooms are fat-free food and have many benefits.
Nutrients in mushrooms vary by type — but all contain potassium, fiber and various B vitamins and minerals. Certain types also pack a significant amount of vitamin D
In addition, mushrooms are the highest food source of ergothioneine, an antioxidant reported to have potent anti-inflammatory effects.
Mushrooms can also strengthen your immune system and protect you from certain cancers.
According to research by the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition when certain mushrooms (shiitake, white button, oyster and king oyster mushrooms) are exposed to a short cooking time, they retain more of their minerals and nutrients.
Microwaving or grilling mushrooms significantly increased their antioxidant activity, even when grilled in a small amount of oil, when compared to boiling or frying.
Garlic is one of the most popular ingredients in the world’s cuisine. It is also a daily addition to every dish. It has a charming aroma and almost no fat.
Garlic has been used for medical purposes throughout history.
It enhances your immune system and makes you fight the cold easily. Your grandpa always suggests you to eat this wonderful ingredient, right? And she can’t be more accurate.
Garlic also helps with reducing blood pressure and decreasing cholesterol. However, that is only possible if you eat garlic almost every day (compounding). Check our guide to the Mediterranean Diet.
Not a favorite food of bodybuilders, right? However, there is a reason they eat plenty of it.
With the combination of low-fat and an impressive amount of high protein, chicken breasts are indeed one of the most popular foods in the fitness industry. They help you build this muscle mass and also help you stay lean.
Chicken Breasts also contain large amounts of:
- niacin (vitamin B3)
Check these 8 health benefits of the niacin:
- May Reduce Symptoms of Arthritis
- Improves Skin Function
- Boosts Brain Function
- May Help Treat Type 1 Diabetes
- May Help Prevent Heart Disease
- Increases HDL Cholesterol (good cholesterol)
- Lowers LDL Cholesterol (bad cholesterol)
- Lowers Triglycerides
- vitamin B6
Take a look into 9 benefits of vitamin B6:
- May Help Treat Nausea During Pregnancy
- May Prevent Clogged Arteries and Reduce Heart Disease Risk
- May Help Prevent Cancer
- May Promote Eye Health and Prevent Eye Diseases
- May Treat Inflammation Associated With Rheumatoid Arthritis
- May Be Useful in Treating anxiety, depression, and irritability.
- May Prevent and Treat Anemia by Aiding Hemoglobin Production
- May Promote Brain Health and Reduce Alzheimer’s Risk
- May Improve Mood and Reduce Symptoms of Depression
- Selenium, which is a powerful antioxidant that fights oxidative stress and helps defend your body from chronic conditions
7 science-based benefits of Selenium:
- Acts as a powerful antioxidant.
- It helps prevent mental decline.
- May reduce your risk of certain cancers.
- May protect against heart disease.
- Boosts your immune system.
- May help reduce asthma symptoms.
- It is important for thyroid health.
- phosphorus, which is a mineral
Phosphorus helps to:
- build strong teeth.
- manage how your body stores and uses energy.
- reduce muscle pain after exercise.
- filter out waste in your kidneys.
- grow, maintain, and repair tissue and cells.
- produce DNA and RNA — the body’s genetic building blocks.
Now you know in detail why the leanest part of the chicken is so popular.
In general, low-fat dairy products like skimmed milk, yogurt, and fat-free cottage cheese are all excellent sources of protein, minerals, vitamins like B6, B12.
The most common dairy product – milk is also rich in calcium and vitamin D. These two are equally good for your bones.
Most of the yogurts contain natural probiotics, which are beneficial for your stomach health.
- If you ever go to Bulgaria don’t forget to try our Bulgarian Yogurt. It is made from 2 specific bacterias. Lactobacillus Bulgaricus is the bacteria, which makes the yogurt so delicious and world-famous.
Bulgarian Yogurt is useful because it strengthens the immune system and helps prevent tumor growth. It’s also high in calcium and helps against osteoporosis and reduces cholesterol levels. The health benefits of the Bulgarian yogurt don’t stop here. It also reduces the risk of high blood pressure.
- Another great probiotic is the greek yogurt. If you have never heard about Bulgarian yogurt, there is no chance you haven’t heard about the greek one.
It is so common these days that people eat it for breakfast, snack or even lunch or dinner. It is also used in every day cooking in most households.
The difference between these two? What’s better?
Well, one isn’t necessarily better than the other. Greek yogurt‘s going to be better if you want a little bit more protein but Bulgarian yogurt is going to be a bit better if you’re looking for the diverse probiotic effect since there’s about 90 billion CFU in a serving of Bulgarian yogurt versus Greek yogurt, about 25 – 30 billion CFU. Still a lot of bacteria but one is almost three times as much as the other.
Soy yogurt and Fortified soy milk are also low in fat and offer similar benefits to dairy milk and yogurt.
If you don’t have lactose intolerance (inability to digest dietary lactose), dairy products are one of the best foods you can consume.
You already know that whole eggs contain a large percentage of fat (around 5 grams per medium egg). That’s simply because of the yolk.
Eating egg whites, however, gives your body a nice amount of protein and zero fat. Cutting the calories from the yolk makes the egg whites a perfect breakfast or a mid-day snack for your day!
Apart from these seven, stick to foods like:
Whole-grain foods such as oats and higher fiber versions of pasta, rice, and bread
Ancient grains like Bulgur and Quinoa. They are a powerhouse of nutrients, including protein, fiber, B vitamins, vitamin E and essential minerals. They may manage diabetes, reduce your risk of heart disease, promote fullness and support a healthy digestive tract.
As you can see, eating low-fat meals have many benefits including managing your cholesterol levels, keeping your heart rate normal, and decreasing your daily calorie consumption, which leads to losing weight.
Don’t know how to start? Don’t worry! We got you covered in Chapter 3 where you will learn how to safely begin the diet.
Shifting to Low Fat Diet
What does it really take to make the switch? How do you do it?
Are you willing to take the first step? If not, let me take you through chapter 3 where you will learn everything from starting the diet to maintaining it in the long-term!
I promise you, at the end of this chapter you will be more motivated than ever to make this change!
Shifting to Low Fat Diet
Every beginning is tough. Being unable to change and staying at the same place is tougher.
It requires the mindset of a person who wants it. And if you are still reading this, I have a feeling that you are exactly that kind of person.
So, how do you go from eating whatever you see to a strict diet?
Very simple, you take BABY STEPS. Let me give you an example.
Tom is an ordinary guy who loves to eat big amounts of food every night. Time is passing and Tom continues to eat indiscriminately. Without noticing he gains 30 pounds of fat and wonders what happened. He decides to get on a strict diet immediately to make a change. He starts training and eating super “clean” food for 2 or 3 weeks. Guess what happens next? He quits! He starts eating more and quickly turns the little results he made into ashes.
Why is that?
The reason behind this is simple. Tom can’t hold this new lifestyle for long because he is used to something else. It takes enormous willpower to change like that. It usually takes time to adapt to a change.
Our advice here is to start small. Make baby steps to your road to the change. Rock by rock are the skyscrapers built.
Start by cutting some of the fatty foods. Not all of them. Be consistent with your diet and you will be grateful. Consistency is key. You will be amazed by how many people actually keep a strict diet in the long-term. Let me tell you, those who started small made significant progress.
You can be one of those people today by making the first step!
You have a picture in your mind now and you know how to start the low-fat diet. However, we want you to have a clear vision on the topic. For this reason, the next chapter delves deeper into the pros and cons you need to know before getting on the low-fat meal plan.
Pros and Cons of the Diet
You really want to make the shift. Unfortunately, you are not sure whether it is the right diet for you.
Don’t worry! We got you covered in Chapter 4 where you will learn all positives and negatives of the low-fat diet.
We want to make things crystal clear for you and help you make the right decision today!
Pros and Cons
For the usefulness of this article, we have to start with some history. Low-fat Diet was very popular in the past. People believed that cutting a whole macronutrient from their menu will result in weight loss. It was true but what was the price?
You already know that reducing your fat intake near 0% brings nothing good. Your body, need some fat to function well, remember?
Pros of Low-Fat Diet
Losing weight (short term)
A positive of the diet is the immediate drop in your weight (short-term weight loss)
You are cutting a whole macronutrient, remember? There is a big certainty you will start losing weight immediately. On the other hand, to keep this weight off, you can’t stop limiting your fat intake. And how long can you hold?
Pro Tip: Make sure to eat rich sources of carbs and lean proteins, as well as good fats. Creating a balanced diet that you can stick to the longest is what your goal should be.
Foods are available and easily found in the markets
You can buy nuts, olives, avocados, and fish from everywhere. If you ever happen to forget your mid-day snack or lunch, you can always go to the nearest store and buy what you need.
- A white fish with a little salad and half sweet potato is a perfect option.
Long-term benefits like reducing breast cancer in women
A study involved nearly 49,000 postmenopausal women across the U.S. to test whether a low-fat dietary pattern would reduce the risk of breast and colorectal cancers and coronary heart disease.
After nearly nine years of dietary change, they found that the low-fat diet did not significantly impact outcomes for these conditions. However, after longer-term follow-up of nearly 20 years, researchers found significant benefits, derived from modest dietary changes emerged and persisted including:
- A 15-35% reduction in deaths from all-causes following breast cancer
- A 13-25% reduction in insulin-dependent diabetes
- A 15-30% reduction in coronary heart disease among 23,000 women without baseline hypertension or prior cardiovascular disease
Cons Of The Low-Fat Diet
Replacing the calories from the fats you don’t consume with calories from carbs. After reducing your calorie intake by removing the fats you will experience hunger. You can’t eat a lot of fats, so you start binging for the most accessible from the three macros – carbohydrates.
An unhealthy source of carbohydrates like sugar is what you should be extra careful about. Consuming more than necessary sugars could lead to different health problems like higher blood pressure, inflammation, weight gain, diabetes, and fatty liver disease.
The recommended daily amount for women is around 25g. For men it is 38g. However, the average American eats 77 grams of sugar per day, which is 3 times more than the recommended amount for women.
We suggest you to be extremely careful of what you put in your mouth. Optimize the dietary fat (fat your body gets from food) and don’t increase your overall calorie intake by eating everything not labeled as fat.
The Restriction Of The Diet
Another con of the low-fat diet is that it’s restrictive.
Eating a diet too low in fat can interfere with the absorption of the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K. Because these nutrients are fat-soluble, your body needs dietary fat (fat your body gets from food) to utilize them.
So, cutting out too much fat means your body won’t be able to absorb these important vitamins.
The Name Of The Diet Can Delude People
It’s the delusional name of the diet. Weird, right? How can the name of a diet mislead people? The answer is simple. “Low-fat” doesn’t mean non-fat. And keeping your fat intake lower doesn’t mean excluding all kinds of fats. Keep it simple and stick to the good fats.
As you have learned in Chapter 1, good fats are all monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats in foods such as:
- Fishes (salmon, tuna)
- Mental Health
A diet that’s too low in fat, especially essential fatty acids, which your body can only get from food might not only restrict you from getting precious vitamins. It can also hurt your mental health because fat is essential for healthy brain development. There are surveys, which show that eating not enough essential fatty acids from unsaturated fats could lead to depression.
To sum up, you learned how popular the low-fat diet was in the past. Now, you know all pros and cons of the diet and you are ready to begin your journey.
However, in chapter 5 we are going to take a closer look at weight-loss and a low-fat diet.
Weight Loss and Low Fat Diet
Weight Loss and Low Fat Diet
You have made it to Chapter 5! Congratulations! You are an ambitious person who wants to make a lasting change in his life.
Maintaining a healthy weight can be a tough task. We all know that. Being overweight is something so frequent that we think it’s normal. According to a survey, every 3 of 4 men are overweight or have obesity.
As I mentioned it’s something that we accept for a normal condition. However, being overweight is something that comes with its price. The consequences are painfully familiar to you but I have to stretch them here.
Obesity and Overweight are the most common conditions that could lead to:
Type 2 Diabetes
High Blood Pressure
Fatty Liver Disease
It is your responsibility to live a healthy life and maintain a normal weight. As the great Socrates once said: “No man has the right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training. It is a shame for a man to grow old without seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.”
Weight Loss and daily activity go hand by hand. If you don’t train, I suggest you take this baby step first. Make it a habit and combine it with a nice diet plan, which suits you best.
Not feeling motivated, yet? Let’s continue with the main question.
Can you lose weight on a low-fat diet? Absolutely! There is one condition though. You have to be in a calorie deficit (burning more calories than you eat). Every diet’s goal is to put you in a calorie deficit if you want to lose weight.
Losing weight is the easy part. Keeping and maintaining your results is a little challenging. However, there is an easy way to track your calories and maintain your weight. It’s called “MyFitnessPal.” This app is one of the many tools you can use for tracking your calories and macros.
This useful app helps you track your calories and macronutrients. It learns you to always read the labels of the foods you consume. With one click you add your meals in the app and the magic happens.
You will feel it’s taking a long time at the beginning to add every one of your meals. Trust me, after 2 or 3 months you won’t need it anymore because you will have created a valuable habit.
Use our calorie calculator to figure out exactly how many calories you have to consume to reach your goal.
Now, let’s take a look into 11 myths about fats and cholesterol that you should be aware of:
Cholesterol Rich Foods are unhealthy and you should avoid them
There are thousands of people who think foods like whole eggs, organ meats, and full-fat dairy products are unhealthy. However, that’s not true.
Foods like ice-cream, fried foods, and processed foods should be avoided, yet that’s not the case with nutritious, high cholesterol foods.
High cholesterol foods can be a nutritious bomb for you. For example, full-fat yogurt is packed with protein and calcium, while egg yolks are high in cholesterol and also happen to be loaded with important vitamins and minerals, including B12, choline, and selenium
In addition, consuming healthy, cholesterol-rich foods like eggs, fatty seafood, and full-fat dairy may improve many aspects of your health.
Eating fat increases diabetes risk
There is a big misconception when it comes down to the risk of diabetes and dietary fats.
Consuming big amounts of trans fats like whole-baked goods and fast food can indeed increase your chance of getting diabetes. However, other fat sources may offer protection against diabetes development.
Remember the good fats? Poly and monounsaturated fats like olives, nuts, avocados and fatty-fish all improve blood sugar and insulin levels and potentially protect against diabetes.
Omega-6 rich oils and Margarine are healthier
There is a belief, which states that consuming vegetables-oils based products like canola oil and margarine is better for health, instead of animal-fat. However, based on recent research, that’s not the case.
Margarine and canola oil tend to be high in omega-6 fats. Yet, most of us need omega-6 and omega-3 fats for general health, both of them are too high in omega-6 and low in omega-3.
This little imbalance between margarine and canola oil can lead to some health conditions such as mood disorders, obesity, insulin resistance, increased heart disease risk factors, and mental decline, due to the higher omega-6 to omega-3 ratio.
High-fat foods are unhealthy
There is even a bigger disbelief with the high-fat foods. Even the nutritious fatty foods have a bad reputation and go to the “bad foods” group.
This is weird because many high-fat foods are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. They also help you keep your hunger down between meals and helps you maintain a healthy weight.
Eating rich in fatty foods like eggs, avocados, nuts, and full-fat dairy may help boost weight loss by decreasing hunger-promoting hormones and increasing feelings of fullness.
Of course, eating too much of any food, including the foods above, can postpone weight loss. Yet, when they’re added to the diet in healthful ways, these high-fat foods may help you reach and keep a healthy weight while supplying you with an important source of nutrients.
Fat-free products are the smartest choice
Fat-free products are all around you when you enter a supermarket. The tricky part is that they are there for a reason. They have a targeted group of people who buy these products.
This target group is usually people who want to lose weight. Who on earth doesn’t want to eat his favorite foods like ice-cream, biscuits, potato chips, and cheese and still lose weight?
At first, there is nothing wrong if the calories of the foods are low, right? Well, there is something catchy. There’s always a catch.
Low-fat foods may seem like a smart choice but in reality, they are not so good for overall health. Naturally, fat-free foods like vegetables and fruits are a good choice, unlike the processed foods in the grocery shop. These foods can negatively affect your metabolic health, body weight and even more.
The tricky part here is that there is always an added sugar. And consuming high amounts of added sugar leads to nothing good. Diabetes, heart disease and obesity are only a small part of the equation.
Eating too much added sugar in your diet can also lead to a negative effect on the hormones leptin and insulin. They can cause you to eat more calories in general, which causes weight gain.
It’s like a vicious circle. Don’t get involved in that circle! Control your consumption of fat-free foods and everything should be good.
Saturated fat causes heart disease
This topic is highly debated among experts. However, recent research showed no connection between saturated fats (fats from meats, dairy products) and heart disease.
Saturated fat increases well-known heart disease risk factors, such as LDL (bad) cholesterol and apolipoprotein B.
Saturated fat intake tends to increase the amount of large, fluffy LDL particles, but decrease the amount of smaller, denser LDL particles that are linked to heart disease.
Plus, research has demonstrated that certain types of saturated fat may increase heart-protective HDL cholesterol
I would be able to feel it if I had high cholesterol.
You can’t tell whether you have high cholesterol or not. The reason for that is because there are no symptoms of high cholesterol. Occasionally, some people experience yellowish growths on their skin called xanthomas, which are cholesterol-rich deposits. People with xanthomas may have high cholesterol levels.
The bad cholesterol can’t be felt or experienced unless you had a heart attack or stroke. For this reason, the Dietlife team suggests checking your cholesterol levels every 3 to 5 years.
Eating foods with a lot of cholesterol will not make my cholesterol levels go up.
Things could complicate here. It is a fact that foods with a lot of cholesterol usually also have a high percentage of saturated fats. Saturated fats can make your cholesterol higher, so always choose foods that are low in saturated fats like foods with plenty of fiber.
Healthy fats like olive oil, nuts and avocados are a good-to-go option. Reduce the consumption of red meat, butter, and cheese because they have a lot of saturated fats.
I can’t do anything to change my cholesterol levels.
Yes, you can! You can do many things to keep your cholesterol levels at a normal and healthy range.
Talk to a medical care provider because he will tell you best whether to start taking any medicines or not. If that’s the case, stick to your prescribed medicines and everything should be alright.
Quit smoking now! One more way to keep your cholesterol levels normal is quitting all tobacco products. Smoking damages your blood cells and hardens the walls of your arteries. These two increases the chance of getting a heart disease.
Increase your daily activity! Professionals recommend a minimum of 150 to 300 minutes of moderate physical activity every week.
Make better food choices. Try to choose foods naturally high in fiber like the ones above and limit foods high in saturated and trans fats.
Know your family history! The chances of you getting a high cholesterol by DNA is much higher if someone from your family also had it.
These all lead to getting tested more often. Every 3 to 5 years is a good timeframe for testing yourself for high cholesterol.
If the Nutrition Label shows no cholesterol, the food is heart-healthy
Keep in mind that almost all foods labeled as “no cholesterol” have enormous amounts of trans and saturated fats. Be sure to always check the labels and read them in detail before buying certain “no cholesterol” food. The devil is in the details.
Furthermore, be aware that the serving size that those numbers are based on are usually smaller than the entire package.
Only overweight and obese people have high cholesterol.
People of any body type can have high cholesterol. People of any age can also have high cholesterol. It doesn’t matter whether you are a kid or an adult. It doesn’t matter if you are thin or overweight (overweight people have a higher chance of having high cholesterol).
Regardless of your diet, physical activity and lifestyle, you should always check yourself for high cholesterol regularly.
You learned the main thing about losing weight – calorie deficit. You have also learned that you should track your calories. Losing weight takes time, especially in the long-term. Dedication and consistency go hand by hand to achieve and keep your results.
See you in the next chapter where you will take a look at our unique low-fat diet shopping list.
Fundamental Grocery List
7 Foods To Always Look For When Being On Low-Fat Diet
Protein might be the most expensive macronutrient. However, it is the most important one when it comes down to building muscle mass or losing weight. Do you know that protein is also the most satisfying macro?
It creates a feeling of fullness and helps you reach your dream weight faster. Consume 1g/pound if you don’t train. If you indeed are a workout junkie you can consume 1.5g – 2g/ 2 pounds. (2 – 2.2g/kilos).
Stick to low-fat foods like lean beef, turkey, chicken breasts, and white-fleshed fish. You can also go with some fatty fishes like salmon, tuna and sardines. Just keep track of your fats intake with “MyFitnessPal”
Fruits and Vegetables
We can’t go anywhere without these two. Unfortunately, fruits and vegetables are packed with important vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants for your health. It is not a coincidence that your parents have wanted you to eat this last piece of broccoli as you were a kid.
Always search for fresh, canned or frozen options. Stick to the general goods:
There are so many of them and you can’t buy anything wrong.
My favorite snack. Delicious and nutritious, as I love to say. Nuts are a wonderful option for a snack or a pre-workout meal combined with a protein shake.
They contain many “good” fats such as monounsaturated fats. Yet, be careful because they are not very filling, which can lead to eating more calories than necessary.
A small portion of 20 grams is enough to make you forget hunger until your next meal.
Rice, Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Oats
These four are what I call the “Fantastic Four.” Sounds familiar? It should.
The reason behind this “unique” name is that these four superfoods are the most healthiest carbohydrates.
They are all low in fat and rich in carbohydrates. You can’t imagine how many different recipes you can try with every one of them.
These complex carbohydrates are something that you always want in your home. They are a source of energy and can contribute to your overall health. Add complex carbohydrates like the “Fantastic Four” in most of your meals and say goodbye to hunger. They are filling, nutritious and healthy.
Stick to the dairy products as long they are low-fat or non-fat. However, keep aware of the added sugar of the far-free products. Dairies are good for your peristaltic and overall health. Some of the low-fat foods you can buy are:
fat-free or “skim” milk or yogurt
light or fat-free cream cheese
low fat cottage cheese, milk, or yogurt
Cereals, pasta products, grains
corn or whole wheat tortillas
most cold cereals
noodles, especially whole-grain versions
Other foods to make your dishes tasty
sauces containing skim milk
vegetable-based broth soups
light salad dressings, or simply lemon juice and balsamic vinegar
These are some of the basic foods in the low-fat diet. You can make thousands of mouth-watering recipes with them if you get creative. Furthermore, later in the article, you will learn 5 quick & easy recipes for a low fat diet.
You know what to buy in the supermarket. In chapter 7 we will see how you can combine your workouts with the low-fat meal plan.
Low Fat Diet and Workouts
Exercises and Low-Fat Diet? Is it possible to combine them?
Let me ask you a question. What happens if you consume a high-protein, high-carb diet, and a low-fat diet (20% of your calorie intake comes from fats). Let me tell you.
What happens is that you eat healthy, have a lot of energy (carbs are your energy source) and give your body only the required “good” fats. You get strong and add a minimal amount of body fat.
As you can see a low-fat diet is one of the best diets you can choose when you are lifting weights. If you want to gain weight you just have to do the opposite of the calorie deficit. You have to be in a calorie surplus (meaning you eat more calories than you burn). So simple, right?
However, if you love other sports activities like swimming, jogging, playing tennis or even rock climbing, the same principle applies. It doesn’t matter what your hobby is. The most important thing is to have daily activity in your life.
I want to stretch that practicing any kind of sport boosts your immune system and you are less vulnerable to illness. Incorporating sport with a healthy diet plan leads to you getting untouchable. Well, not literally but you get the point.
Now, let’s get more specific with the two main questions you have in your mind.
Is a Low-Fat Diet best for gaining muscle?
Carbohydrates are compulsory for athletic performance.
If you want to compete at your best level you have to consume a lot of carbs as fuel. Keep in mind that you should fuel your body with carbs 1 – 1.5 hours before a workout. Based on several studies, carbohydrates are the substrate most efficiently metabolized by the body.
Consuming more carbs lead to replenish glycogen stores, the depletion of which leads to performance slowdown, especially when intense exercises are performed on a regular basis.
Furthermore, endurance athletes who don’t eat enough carbs are more vulnerable to skeletal muscle damage, and experience reduced cognition.
Carbs increase insulin, which is anabolic. Insulin travels through the blood to your body’s cells. It tells the cells to open up and let the glucose in. Once inside, the cells convert glucose into energy or store it to use later.
So, overfeeding with carbs is so popular among athletes to increase skeletal muscle mass. Consuming big amounts of carbs serve as a fuel and also a surge in insulin. Insulin is considered an anabolic hormone as it helps with protein metabolism and nutrient absorption.
What can we say about fat intake? As you already know fats are essential nutrients, which helps to absorb fat-soluble vitamins and maintain hormonal health.
There is a survey, which states that consumption of polyunsaturated fats help our bodies to support healthy levels of testosterone. That leads to a better mood, performance and overall body composition (keep your fats intake around 20%).
A reminder – Polyunsaturated fats are all nuts, seeds and fatty fish.
Conclusion: The ideal macronutrient ratio varies from person to person as we are all different. Experiment and track your calories to see what works best for you in and outside the gym.
Is a Low-fat Diet best for losing weight?
Although we answered this question in Chapter 5, let’s make a quick summary of it.
Calorie balance is the most important factor
Manipulating your macronutrients is less important when it comes down to losing or gaining weight. Calorie in vs calories out is what matters the most. If you eat more calories you gain weight, if you eat less, you lose weight.
The best diet is the one you can stick to
Consistency is the key, remember? Define your goals and adopt a balanced diet in your life. Whether it will be a low-fat diet or another one stick to it and results will come.
Studies suggest both the low-fat diet and low-carb diet (keto diet) work fine for weight loss
Conclusion: It is again individual. One person may find the low-fat diet better, others can say it is uncomfortable. There is no statement as “best diet”, “best exercise” or “best training program”.
Experiment and see what’s best for your physique.
You have learned that the most important thing is to have any sort of physical activity. You have learned that you can successfully merge the low-fat meal plan with any kind of sport. You know how to gain and lose weight.
See you in chapter 8 where you will learn 5 quick % easy recipes for the Low-Fat Diet.
Daily Menu with Low Fat Recipes
5 Quick % Easy Low-Fat Recipes
I am a big fan of quick and delicious meals. These 5 favorite recipes of mine always save time and are budget-friendly. Keep your mouth closed while reading to prevent getting wet.
Recipe number one is Vegetable salad with Salmon.
Affordable, low-calorie and nutritious. You can eat it either for lunch or dinner.
Ingredients for 1 serving: (double everything if you want to surprise your loved one)
4 oz salmon fillet
2 leaves romaine lettuce
1 medium tomato
1/2 medium cucumber
1/4 medium yellow bell pepper
1 tbsp fresh parsley
salt and black pepper
2 tbsp lemon juice
Fill a pan with enough water and bring the water to a simmer.
Add salt, sliced lemon, and thyme to the water.
Add salmon, cover the pan, and cook for 20 minutes.
Remove salmon from pan, and season with salt, pepper
In a large bowl, combine the romaine, tomato, cucumber, bell pepper, parsley, lemon juice, salt, and black pepper. Toss well and set aside.
Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray and place the salmon fillets on the sheet. Sprinkle it with salt and pepper. Place under the oven broiler can cook for about 10 minutes or until lightly browned on top and cooked through. Check the salmon halfway through and rotate the pan as needed so the salmon browns evenly.
Spoon the salad onto a plate and place the salmon on top. Serve and enjoy!
Calories – 290
Protein – 25g
Carbohydrate – 14g
Dietary Fiber – 3g
Sugar – 8g
Total Fat – 12g
Trans Fat – 0g
Saturated Fat – 3.5
Cholesterol – 60mg
Sodium – 85mg
If you are gaining weight combine the meal with a large sweet potato (boiled or baked) for extra carbs.
Recipe number two is something catchy. Shrimp and quinoa is one of my favorite dishes. Shrimps are an extraordinary seafood and world-wide famous with their high protein and low-fat content.
Quinoa is gluten-free, high in protein and one of the few plant foods that contain sufficient amounts of all nine essential amino acids. The famous food is also rich in vitamins and antioxidants.
Ingredients for 1 serving:
1 bay leaf
oz shrimp peeled
1/4 cup dry quinoa
1 tsp olive oil
1/4 medium red bell pepper
6 grape tomatoes
1/3 cup green peas cooked
salt and black pepper
4 oz shrimp peeled
Cook quinoa according to package directions.
Add water and slices of lemon and bay leaf to a large stockpot set over medium heat.
Bring to a boil and allow to boil for 5 minutes. Stir in the raw shrimp, cover and remove from heat.
Allow to rest for about 4 minutes, until all the shrimp are cooked through.
Pour the shrimp and liquid into a colander to strain, peel and set aside.
In a large skillet, heat oil to medium-low and sauté garlic and bell pepper until tender. Add quinoa, grape tomatoes, green peas salt, and black pepper and add shrimp, and continue cooking for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and serve.
Calories – 310
Protein – 31g
Carbohydrate – 32g
Dietary Fiber – 6g
Sugars – 6g
Total Fat – 1g
Trans Fat – 0g
Saturated Fat – 1g
Cholesterol – 180g
Sodium – 150g
As the recipe is low in calories, add a complex source of carbs if your goal is to build muscle mass. You can add brown rice, potatoes or rice cakes.
Recipe number 3 is chicken salad with avocado. A great option for your lunch-break or just a regular dinner with family.
As you already know chicken breasts are one of the most popular foods in the fitness industry because of the high protein and low-fat food content. Merged with a monounsaturated source of fats like the avocado makes the dish a perfect choice for you.
Ingredients for 1 serving:
1 bay leaf
4 oz chicken breast
1/4 medium yellow onion
1/2 cup corn
1 tbsp parsley
salt and black pepper
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 oz avocado
Add the chicken breast in a pan full of salted water with a lemon slice and a bay leaf.
Boil for around 15-20 minutes until the chicken gets white
Cut it into very little pieces with 2 forks
In a large bowl, add the shredded chicken, avocado, onion, corn, and parsley.
Drizzle with the lime (or lemon) juice, and season with salt and pepper. Toss gently until all the ingredients are combined and served.
Calories – 340
Protein – 39g
Carbohydrates – 20g
Dietary Fiber – 5g
Sugar – 6g
Total Fat – 12g
Trans Fat – 0g
Saturated Fat – 2.5g
Cholesterol – 95mg
Sodium – 100mg
For recipe number 4 we’ve prepared a breakfast option for you. Lemon Blueberry Pancakes are the best option for you if you want a high protein, delicious and different outcome of the traditional omelet.
Ingredients for 1 serving:
1/2 cup old fashioned oats, grounded
3 egg whites
2 oz cottage cheese
1 scoop vanilla protein powder (if you don’t have a protein powder add 3 more egg whites)
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp lemon zest
1/4 cup water
1 tbsp plain greek yogurt
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp honey
Combine the oats, egg whites, cottage cheese, vanilla powder, lemon juice, 1/4 tsp. lemon zest, and water in a blender. Blend until the mixture is smooth.
pour 1/4 cup of the pancake mixture into the center of the pan. Cook for 2-4 minutes, or until the edges start to harden and a spatula can easily slide underneath the pancake.
If you don’t have to make little sweet pancakes one by one, pour more mixture into the pan and make them bigger.
Flip over and cook an additional 2-4 minutes, or until the batter is cooked through.
Repeat with the remaining mixture.
For the topping, combine the yogurt, honey, lemon juice, in a small mixing bowl.
Top yogurt over the pancakes along with a few fresh blueberries. Enjoy!
Calories – 410
Protein – 48g
Carbohydrates – 42g
Dietary Fiber – 5g
Sugar – 12g
Total Fat – 6g
Trans Fat – 0g
Saturated Fat – 1.5g
Cholesterol – 15mg
Sodium – 420mg
The last recipe is your ultimate time-saver breakfast. It is the Green Protein Smoothie
Ingredients for one cup:
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
2 oz spinach
1.5 scoop vanilla powder
1 tbsp peanut butter
Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and blend until it gets smooth.
Calories – 390
Protein – 44g
Carbohydrates – 34g
Dietary Fiber – 6g
Sugar – 19g
Total Fat – 11g