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Is eating 42% calories from fat ruining my diet?

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Author: Message: Sort First Post on Top

Posts: 12,375
8/1/13 5:21 P

The question is almost never about whether you're getting too much of X; the question is whether eating that much X means you don't get enough Y.

Are you getting enough fiber? Calcium? Protein? Usually, low carb diets end up being too low in fiber. Getting too little fiber from food is often a marker for getting too little of the vitamins that are usually also there in foods with fiber, but that we don't count separately, and also of minor nutrients that most people don't even know about but that are the really healthy part of high-fiber foods. (These minor nutrients are the reason that fiber supplements don't reduce your cancer risks the way that the same amount of fiber from food does.)

You'll also want to look at the type of fat you're getting. Saturated fat shouldn't be more than 10% of your calories most days.

There are probably some easy ways to bring the balance closer to the standard. For example, try making your burrito with mushrooms and/or peppers instead of turkey bacon (and/or with a very small amount of real bacon instead of a full serving turkey bacon-- if you really read the labels, turkey bacon is kind of disappointing in how few calories it saves you.) Soy chorizo is another possibility; I'm not a vegetarian, but I like soyrizo better than regular! in the afternoon, try one tablespoon of pb instead of two, with sliced fruit. PB and banana sandwich is the classic, but sliced strawberries, apples, etc are really good and will probably be a little more effective at powering the run.

Posts: 26,528
8/1/13 3:25 P

I checked your nutrition tracker.
You are about 36-44% fat calories.
It looks like each day you are having 1 higher fat item that is pushing you over the range.
Chicken leg with skin, Italian sausage, etc.

One small tweak to a healthier, leaner meat and you will be within range and saving calories as well....skinless chicken breast, pork loin chop, piece of fish, lean beef, etc.

SP Registered Dietitian

Posts: 259
8/1/13 2:29 P

Honestly, people make a lot of different diets with different levels work for them. Some people swear by low fat or low carb or whatever else. So it's really what works for you.

There's actually been a lot of research going into dietary fat, and slowly chipping away at many previously-held notions, like the idea that it contributes to heart disease or to being overweight, etc. Turns out many of those notions are pretty unsupported scientifically. Somewhere along the line, we got it into our heads that fat is the enemy, with some studies showing that many Americans believe a diet completely devoid of fat would be healthier than a diet containing even a "little bit" of it. But the body needs fat just like it needs vitamins and protein and carbs, etc.

So see if it works for you. Just be mindful of trying to pair your healthy fats with veggies and other good stuff so that you're getting a good mix for your body. If it doesn't seem to be working for your weight loss, trying switching it up a bit, but make sure to give you body at least a couple months to adapt.
Good luck!

Posts: 1,044
8/1/13 2:25 P

Not at all. So long as you're getting healthy fats (nuts, seeds, avocado, etc) then I wouldn't worry about it too much.

Posts: 40
8/1/13 2:11 P

Thanks. Yeah I don't eat this percentage on purpose. I just try to make a meal schedule each morning and somehow it turns out with this breakdown each day. I also can never hit my recommended amount of carbs without going over on calories. I'm clearly doing something wrong. emoticon

Posts: 1,044
8/1/13 1:41 P

I don't think so. There are other members that can speak better to this as they're more knowledgeable about the higher fat/low carb diets, but it can be a healthy way to eat.

Posts: 40
8/1/13 1:38 P

Hey everybody!

I have been having problems with nutrition recently. I feel like i always eat too much fat per day. My intake is always around or just above 40% calories from fat. Protein and carbs are both usually around 30%. My calories per day fluctuate between 1400-1650 depending on my day. Most of my fat per day comes from things like my daily breakfast burrito made from an egg and a half, turkey bacon, and whole wheat tortilla. I also usually have a tablespoon or two of peanut butter on whole grain bread around 4pm to satisfy me for my 4 1/2 mile run that i do at 6pm 4-5 days a week. I am not sure if my carb fat protein breakdown is going to hinder my diet results. I just restarted my diet last week, so I am trying to figure this all out before it's been too long.

By the way I am 5 foot 6 inches, female, and 164 pounds. My job is very sedentary so my running is definitely key to making sure I am moving every day.

Thanks for the help everyone!

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