Thursday, October 8, 2015

Love healthy fats; chocolate pumpkin fudge

Chocolate pumpkin fudge

There are so many reasons to love my favorite fat--- olive oil. Along with other healthy fats, it can reduce silent inflammation, the root cause of chronic disease; lessen your pain; and help you lose weight, all of which are important to those with fibromyalgia.

Extra virgin olive oil---my favorite fat
You’re probably thinking but how can this be true. Doesn’t fat make you fat? The truth is healthy fat does not make you fat. Our bodies need fat to perform many functions for good health. Our brains are 60 percent fat. Our cells are encased in fat. If we avoid fat, we fail to replenish essential nutrients needed by the body.

Not all fats are created equally. Omega 3 and 6 polyunsaturated fats are essential. They are not produced by the body. We must get them from our diet as they are a significant part of almost all cell membranes.Olive oil, my favorite, along with flaxseed oil, coconut oil and ghee are some of the healthiest fats.

Sunflower seed butter and coconut oil---also favorites
 Olive oil, however, is in a class by itself. It is neither an omega 3 or 6 but rather an omega 9 with the highest concentration of monounsaturated fats of any edible oils This makes it one of the healthiest oils there is.
 If those aren’t enough reasons, now there is another reason to “hug this healthy fat.”A new study suggests that women can dramatically reduce their risk of breast cancer by following a version of the Mediterranean diet that goes heavy on extra virgin olive oil.

Women who followed such a diet were 62 percent less likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer than women who simply reduced the overall amount of fat in their diets, according to the results of a randomized clinical trial published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.

The focus of the clinical trial originally started out to assess the cardiovascular benefits of the Mediterranean diet, which emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fish and olive oil. Participants were randomly assigned to one of three groups – Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra virgin olive oil, Mediterranean diet supplemented with mixed nuts, or a regular low-fat diet. After studying nearly 7,500 people for about five years, the researchers had compelling evidence that those who were on either type of Mediterranean diet had better heart health than their counterparts who weren't.

Researchers also tracked the incidence of breast cancer in the women participants in the study. The results once again showed the amazing benefits of olive oil. The risk of being diagnosed with invasive breast cancer was lowest in women who were on the Mediterranean diet with additional extra virgin olive oil---1.1 cases per 1,000 person-years or 68 percent lower. The highest rate in those women studied was for those who were advised to eat less fat – 2.9 cases for every 1,000 person-years. That compared to a diagnosis rate of 1.8 cases per 1,000 person-years for women who were on the Mediterranean diet with extra nuts.

The women in the extra virgin olive oil, Mediterranean diet group got 22 percent of their total calories from the oil, on average, but getting at least 15 percent of calories from the oil could provide significant protection, according to researchers.

Lesson from this study: women have nothing to lose – and potential much to gain – by eating more like the people in the Mediterranean.

 I use olive oil at every meal, especially as the main ingredient in my salad dressing. But two of my other favorite fats are coconut oil and sunbutter. Here is a recipe for one of my favorite treats featuring these two fats---Chocolate Pumpkin Fudge.

What you need for 5-6 mini-servings:
2 T. pumpkin puree
2 T. sunflower seed butter
2 T. cocoa powder
¼ cup coconut oil
½ tsp. stevia
Pinch of salt
Optional: 1/8 tsp. cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice

What you do:
Melt oil and sunflower seed butter in a small saucepan. Add other ingredients and blend. Pour into a small loaf pan lined with parchment paper. Place in the fridge until firm. Cut into pieces. Serve as it is or topped with a bit of chocolate sauce.


Good said...

Thanks so much for this great post. I love olive oil too and will definitely try your recipe for a special treat for my grandkids

Sheree Welshimer said...

Olive oil is great. I always purchase cold-pressed olive oil bottled in tinted glass.

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