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Low-Fat Diets for a Healthy Living by Priyanka ,  Feb 21, 2013

Fat gets a lot of the attention for many good reasons. Fat can raise cholesterol levels in the blood, increasing a person's risk for heart disease.

In addition, some fatty foods (such as bacon, sausage, and potato chips) often have fewer vitamins and minerals than low-fat foods.

Moreover as mentioned, fat has about twice as many calories per gram as carbohydrates and proteins. A gram of fat has 9 calories, while a gram of carbohydrate or protein has 4 calories. In other words, you could eat twice as much carbohydrates or proteins as fat for the same amount of calories.

Fat is an essential macronutrient but is very dense in calories. Low-fat diets and products are marketed as ways to help you maintain your weight and health. Too much fat, especially the wrong kinds, can contribute to weight gain and heart disease. Too little fat, however, can leave you feeling ravenous and deprive you of proper nutrition. Low-fat diets contain anywhere from zero to 30 percent fat. Instead of focusing only on percentages, focus on the types of fat you choose for optimal health.
Forget fad diets pushing cabbage soup, weight-loss shakes or maple syrup. Swapping fatty foods for low-fat alternatives will keep you slim - and now there's World Health Organisation-backed research to prove it.A review of 33 trials involving 73,589 men, women and children in America, Europe and New Zealand found that choosing low fat foods helped people lose around 3.5 pounds, slim their waist-lines and cut bad cholesterol - all without dieting.Researchers who led the study said its results prove for the first time that people can lose weight without trying to."The weight reduction..when people ate less fat was remarkably consistent - we saw it in almost every trial. Those who cut down more on fat lost more weight," said Lee Hooper from the University of East Anglia medical school, who led the work.

For more than two decades, many commentators have discussed and cussed so-called low-fat diets and gotten away with talking nonsense. It is time to look at some facts.

Virtually all of these discussions are based on recommendations of reports of the National Academy of Sciences during the 1980s when the initial suggestion was made to reduce total dietary fat to 30 percent (from the average of 35-37 percent of calories) -- I know because I co-authored the first of these reports on diet and cancer in 1982. Then, during the next decade or so, this 30 percent benchmark became the definition of a low fat diet. A myth was born because this diet did not lead to obesity, as claimed.

Blueberry-Strawberry Breakfast Shortcake

What You Need

 frozen whole wheat waffle, lightly toasted
1/2 cup  BREAKSTONE'S FREE or KNUDSEN FREE Fat Free Cottage Cheese
1/4 cup  honey-flavored multi-grain cereal flakes with cinnamon-flavored clusters
1/4 cup  sliced strawberries
1/4 cup  blueberries

Make It

TOP warm waffle with remaining ingredients.

SERVE immediately.

Baked Sweet Potato Fries

Olive Oil, for tossing
5 sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch long slices, then 1/4-wide inch strips, using a crinkle cut knife
1 tablespoon House Seasoning (recipe follows)
1/2 teaspoon paprika
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

Line a sheet tray with parchment. In a large bowl toss sweet potatoes with just enough oil to coat. Sprinkle with House Seasoning and paprika. Spread sweet potatoes in single layer on prepared baking sheet, being sure not to overcrowd. Bake until sweet potatoes are tender and golden brown, turning occasionally, about 20 minutes. Let cool 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Per Serving (based on 3 servings): Calories: 273; Fat: 9.5g (Saturated Fat: 1g); Protein: 4g; Carbohydrates: 44g; Sugar: 9g; Fiber 7g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 1,670mg

House Seasoning:
1 cup salt
1/4 cup black pepper
1/4 cup garlic powder
For the House Seasoning:

Mix ingredients together and store in an airtight container for up to 6 months.