By Jenny Everett, SELF magazine
We used to assume that fat was fat. Now, most of us know that while some fats are terribly bad for us, others are actually quite healthy!
That's great news, but here's our question: If most of our fat is coming from healthy fats (monounsaturated, polyunsaturated and omega-3 fatty acids), how much is too much? Is it possible to overdo it?
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According to registered dietician Willow Jarosh, a contributing editor at SELF and co-founder of C&J Nutrition, most women need about 30 percent of their total daily calories to come from fat -- no matter what type of fat it may be. For a woman eating 1,800 calories a day, that's around 540 calories from fat or 60 grams of fat each day.
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Here's what 60 grams of healthy fat might look like:
* 1 tbsp peanut/almond butter = 8 or 9 grams
* 1 tbsp olive oil = 13.5 grams
* 1 ounce almonds (around 23 almonds) = 14 grams
* 1/4 cup sunflower seeds = 14 grams
* 4 ounces cooked salmon = 14 grams
"Health-wise, making most of the fat in your diet come from healthful sources like seeds, nuts, fatty fish, olive oil, etc. is ideal, but you still want to aim for around 30 percent of your calories from fat and no more," says Jarosh. "This ensures that you're getting enough protein and carbohydrates into your diet as well as an overall variety of food."
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Carbs and protein are vital to keeping your body humming at its best, and they also have fewer calories (4 per gram) compared to fat (9 per gram). So you definitely don't want to overload on any fat -- including the healthy type -- if you're trying to lose weight.
Remember: "Too much of a good thing doesn't turn it into a GREAT thing," says Jarosh. "Healthy fat is no exception."
What's your favorite source of healthy fat?
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