Weight Loss: Four Fatty Foods to Eat and Two to Avoid

Excessive calorie intake, regardless of the source of macronutrients, will lead to weight gain. The current Institute of Medicine guidelines, based on available scientific evidence, recommend a diet of 20 to 35 percent fat, 45 to 65 percent carbohydrates, and 10 to 35 percent protein.

Dietary fat and weight loss

Fats are an important part of our diet. They are a source of energy and help our body produce hormones and better absorb fat-soluble nutrients such as vitamins A, D, E, and K, as stated by the American Heart Association.

A gram of fat (regardless of type) contains 9 calories. They are more caloric than protein (4 calories per gram) and carbohydrates (also 4 calories per gram). This is one of the reasons why we have been following low-fat diets for a long time.

But it’s important to remember that excessive calorie intake, regardless of the source of macronutrients, will lead to weight gain, and remember that fats are really good for weight loss. Here’s why:

Dietary fats slow down digestion

According to the July issue of Today’s Dietitian magazine, dietary fat naturally slows down “gastric emptying,” which is the time it takes for food to leave the stomach and continue through the gastrointestinal tract.

We know that foods that take longer to digest make us feel fuller for longer. So, adding a little fat to your meal, such as olive oil to your salad or avocado to your smoothie, will help slow down the digestion process.

In addition, studies show that adding fiber further slows down the digestion of fat.

Dietary fats have a beneficial effect on hunger hormones

There is a growing body of research on the effects of different types of fat on various hunger hormones and satiety levels.

A study published in March 2019 in Appetite found that eating foods high in polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs) led to a greater reduction in ghrelin (the hunger-inducing hormone) and higher levels of CCK (the hunger-suppressing hormone) compared to monounsaturated fats. A diet high in PUFAs also led to a decrease in hunger scores, although there was no difference between the number of calories consumed and the feeling of fullness.

4 fats to add when you’re trying to lose weight


What makes avocados so special when it comes to weight loss? It’s a healthy combination of fat and fiber. According to the US Department of Agriculture, a serving of avocado (one-third of the fruit) contains 4.5 grams of fiber and 9 grams of fat.

If you combine avocados with a salad, chips, or tacos, the added fat will help slow down your digestion, and the grams of fiber will slow it down even more. The only caveat is portion control.


Yes, eating fish is good for your health and your waistline, but salmon (and some other types of fish like tuna and sardines) may have an advantage. These special types of fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and it has been found that these fats can help improve leptin resistance, according to an article published in July 2015 by Today’s Dietitian.

If you are overweight, chances are you also have chronic inflammation, and it is inflammatory chemicals that make our bodies less sensitive to leptin, a hormone that reduces food intake and regulates our metabolism. However, omega-3s can help make your body less resistant to leptin, allowing it to do its job.


Nuts are a good source of healthy fats – according to the Mayo Clinic, they can contain up to 80 percent fat. And all tree nuts are good for us. Nuts are good for our hearts because they help lower LDL cholesterol and reduce inflammation associated with cardiovascular disease.

But walnuts stand out because they are unique in that they contain a solid dose of omega-3s, according to California Walnuts. This also means that they are rich in PUFAs, which we know also have a beneficial effect on hunger hormone levels.

Olive oil

It may seem counterintuitive to add oil to a salad if you’re trying to lose weight, but in fact, olive oil can help you manage your body weight better. After all, it is a staple of the Mediterranean diet, which has been touted as one of the healthiest and most researched diets we can follow.

Researchers studied 11 different randomized clinical trials on olive oil and weight management and concluded that a diet enriched with olive oil leads to greater weight loss than a control diet without it, according to a meta-analysis published in November 2018 in Revista Española de Salud. Pública.

2 fats to limit if you’re trying to lose weight

The biggest thing that can lead to weight gain is overeating, regardless of the source of calories.

However, we know that some foods are good for our health and others are not. Trans fats and saturated fats are not good for our diet and can do more harm than good, although new research is emerging on the effects of different saturated fats – stay tuned!

Trans fats

The fact is that trans fats do not have positive qualities, so much so that the US Food and Drug Administration has demanded that artificial fat be removed from all processed foods. According to the Mayo Clinic, despite the fact that the number of our foods has been drastically reduced, some of them still exist.

You won’t find trans fats in healthy fat sources like chia seeds and almonds, but you can find them in ultra-processed junk foods, which are usually also rich in refined grains. These are foods you should limit if you are trying to lose weight.

Saturated fats

If you are trying to lose weight, chances are you are watching what you eat and trying to eat less. When we do this, it’s especially important to focus on nutrient-rich foods so that we get all the nutrients we need.

By limiting the amount of saturated fat in our diet, which we know is not good for us, we leave room for more beneficial sources of fat, such as mono- and polyunsaturated fats.

Avatar photo

Written by Emma Miller

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist and own a private nutrition practice, where I provide one-on-one nutritional counseling to patients. I specialize in chronic disease prevention/ management, vegan/ vegetarian nutrition, pre-natal/ postpartum nutrition, wellness coaching, medical nutrition therapy, and weight management.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Doctors Told Who Should Not Eat Eggs and Why They are Dangerous

Lactose Intolerance: Three Signs are Named