The media has done an excellent job of educating the public on the pitfalls of too much fat. Yet, good fats (including Omega 3s) are actually necessary for good health. Let’s tour the ‘fat’ world and identify what to avoid and what to include in your daily routine.

Hydrogenated fats are just not good for you. These fats include margarine, shortening, and any food using them (shown on labels).

Low fat and high sugar. When reducing fat, companies often increase sugar to improve ‘taste.’ Read labels! In fact, a lack of the good fats often increases sugar cravings and weight gain.

Expeller pressed oils
Most vegetable oils are made with solvents. The light color of vegetable oils usually indicates they have been highly processed instead of ‘pressed.’ The ‘default’ is solvent – check the label. If it is expeller pressed, it will say so on the label.

Omega 3s
These essential fatty acids primarily come from flaxseed and fish. These oils are essential for the hormone system, brain function and reduction of inflammation. If you take capsules, it takes 10-15 capsules to equal 1 TBL of liquid and 1-2 TBL/day is needed for the average person. I recommend Barlean’s Swirl flax and fish oil products (found in any health food store or at Lifestyle for Health) as it is very easily assimilated, is liquid and tastes amazingly good!

Coconut oil
The often-maligned coconut is actually a great source of good fats. Coconut oil is great topically for skin and hair as well as for baking and cooking. Coconut oil supports your immune system and cardiovascular health as well as your metabolism. And it imparts a great flavor in your favorite recipe. Again, Barleans is my brand of choice – just visit or call 719-488-5688.

Cold-water Fish
Increase your consumption of wild (not farm-raised) cold-water fish such as salmon, halibut and cod. If possible, consume fish 2-4 times/week.

This wonderful food is not only a great source of good fats, it is also a great source of fiber. Guacamole is easy to make – — enjoy it with your favorite veggies. Jicama is a crunchy vegetable that goes really well with guacamole. You can find jicama in any grocery store – – pick one with smooth skin (which will be removed) over wrinkled skin.