In my past life, I was an Advertising Executive having worked for some of the largest agencies in the world and some of the biggest packaged brands out there. Listening in on focus groups, we came to the conclusion that the number one consumer fear about food is fat. In my present life as a Nutritionist and Acupuncturist, I’ve heard this fear voiced numerous times by patients of mine terrified of fat. So the question remains:
Is fat really bad for us?
Well, I figure I’d clear the air and provide you with a recipe to boot. Sweet!
Fat is phat
You may have heard me say this before, but fat is phat – meaning, that we actually need fat – even saturated forms like coconut oil and butter. Fat is structurally an integral part of every single cell membrane in our bodies. We need fat to properly digest fat-soluble vitamins like vitamin A, D, E and K which is the reason why foods like eggs actually contain both fat and fat soluable vitamins. It’s why fortified products like bread and milk make absolutely no sense because it’s not how nature had intended it.
Not to mention, fat is also needed for energy production. It provides us with an even-keeled, slow distributed source of energy and helps to stabilize our blood sugar levels to keep us full and energized. Plus we need it for hormone regulation and for the adequate use of protein. So if you’re eating egg whites – stop. You need the yolk too. Yin yang balance baby, so stop messing with nature.
So why are we all so damn scared?
Blame the Margarine industry
When the margarine industry came out, all fat was evil. They created a synthetic product that uses hexane (a byproduct of the gasoline industry) in the extraction process and bleach to remove the grey colour. Margarine marketers were quick to slam butter (a source of vitamins, minerals and protein), eggs and other saturated fats as bad simply to gain profit.
Sugar is the real culprit
Many patients I see in person and over Skype are for the most part, sugar monsters. And I don’t blame them when sugar is laced and found in just about everything. And if you’re really careful to avoid it, but are still consuming a carb-heavy diet (even with gluten-free grains), you’re running the risk of raising your insulin levels. And insulin is our fat storage hormone! It’s why many PCOS sufferers that I work with are struggling to lose weight, despite going vegetarian and avoiding fat.
Now by no means am I saying that you need to only eat big tubs of fat and protein. I do believe in an alkaline diet rich in greens, so make sure that 50% of your plate is green. And if you have trouble digesting raw foods, make sure it’s cooked or lightly steamed to avoid extinguishing your digestive fire. In the meantime, here is a recipe from recent sold out Damp Detox program that I wanted to share with you that’s perfect for the fall.
*Photo credit to the lovely Jessica Gibson, one of my Damp Detox attendees.
Cauliflower Bacon Chowder
1 medium head of cauliflower, core out and chopped roughly
1 medium red onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves chopped
3 cups salt reduced organic chicken stock
2/3 tsp sea salt
1⁄2 tsp ground black pepper
3/4 cup diced bacon
1 tbsp ghee
A little coconut to fry bacon in In a large saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of ghee until medium hot. Sauté onion for 3-4 minutes or until soft and translucent. Add cauliflower, garlic and stock and bring to boil. Turn the heat down and cook covered for 8-10 minutes.
In the meantime, pan fry the bacon pieces until crisp. At an 8 minute mark, break one whole egg into a smaller saucepan or a metallic mixing bowl that will fit over the larger cooking saucepan. I used a smaller saucepan that I could hold over the steam from the cooking cauliflower soup. While holding the smaller saucepan close to the steam but not touching the simmering liquid, continuously whisk the egg for about 3 minutes until it gets frothy and smooth. It will look almost like a thickened yellowish cream. Set aside.
Transfer cauliflower soup contents into your Vitamix to puree until smooth. You can use a hand held puree blender as well. Add 2/3 teaspoon of sea salt and black pepper, process mixture until smooth. Then while the blender is still on, pour in the egg cream. Stop once everything is incorporated. Taste for salt. Serve with fresh herbs like chives, parsley or basil and crispy bacon sprinkled on top.
So in the meantime, if you suffer from hormonal or digestive issues, acne or depression, trust me when I say that fat is not your enemy. You just may need a tweak to your current regime to get your back on track. So in the meantime, I want to hear from you: