There are two special fats that have been shown to really help people get skinny - coconut oil and conjugated linoleic acid.
Coconut oil is a saturated fat that actually provides great health benefits for the cardiovascular system and the fat burning machinery of the body. Most of the negative press associated with consuming saturated fats was based on information discovered in the 1950's and is largely misunderstood.
Tropical cultures that consume high amounts of saturated fat as coconut oil have very low instances of heart disease and artery disease. On the other hand, in the United States we consume very high amounts of hydrogenated fats and polyunsaturated fats like those in soybean, corn and vegetable oils. Subsequently, Americans have the highest rates of heart and artery disease in the world.
The fat chains in coconut oil can not be stored by the body in any form. Therefore, when they are consumed the body has not choice but to burn them immediately for energy. This triggers the cellular machinery to start the fat burning process. Triggering this fat burning process helps to jump start the burning of other fat in the body. It is an indirect way of starting the metabolic process.
Another way in which coconut oil stimulates fat loss is by supporting the activity of the thyroid gland. Our thyroid gland determines the metabolic rate of our body and therefore determines how much energy we burn each day. An optimally functioning thyroid gland will promote ideal metabolism and stimulate the burning of fat. Green Tea aslo increases metabolism.
In addition to these benefits for weight management, coconut oil contains a compound called Lauric acid. This substance, also found in breast milk, has strong activity against both bacteria and viruses. It has been shown to be helpful for people suffering from chronic viral infections like herpes, mono and even HIV.
Coconut oil is very stable under heat which makes it ideal for high temperature cooking and baking.
Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA)
CLA is a type of fatty acid found in certain dairy and meat products and consumed widely as a popular supplement. Numerous animal and human trials have demonstrated the ability of CLA to reduce body fat in healthy, overweight individuals. The most notable study was published in the Journal of Nutrition. The study found that CLA, when supplemented at a dose of 3400mg/day, reduced fat and preserved muscle tissue in healthy overweight adults. CLA seems to reduce body fat in humans and animals in several different ways:
- CLA works by decreasing the amount of fat that is stored after eating a meal
- By increasing the rate of fat breakdown in fat cells
- By increasing the rate of fat metabolism
The fat loss benefits of CLA are impressive, but an effective weight loss plan will also have to include proper food choices and exercise.
Fats in our diet can help contribute to fat burning weight loss in other ways. Lean meats that contain good quality fat, like salmon, can help people lose weight by supplying the body with a perfect combination of slow burning protein and high quality fat.
In most people the types of food that most significantly stimulate fat storage are carbohydrates. Carbohydrates, both simple and complex, can trigger sharp rises in blood sugar right after they are consumed. This sharp rise in blood sugar is followed by a sharp rise in insulin. Insulin is a hormone that signals our body's to store excess energy, primarily as fat. Eating carbohydrate based foods, mainly grain products, baked goods and sugars results in the release of insulin and triggers the storage of fat.
High quality lean meats and oils produce very small rises in blood sugar. These smaller blood sugar spikes do not trigger as dramatic insulin responses and therefore reduces the fat.
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