25. Whatever You do, Don’t Eat a Low-fat Diet


Lofton says that studies show that people on low-fat diets lose don’t lose weight as readily as those who eat more fat. She says the reason is that low-fat diets are difficult to stick to because it’s dietary fat that makes us feel full. Fat has more calories per gram than protein and carbs (nine in fat versus four in both protein and carbs), and this caloric density makes foods with fat more satisfying.

Lofton recommends getting about 30% of your daily calories from fat. (Twenty percent or lower, she says, constitutes a low-fat diet, and that’s a bit too low for being able to stick to a diet.)

Again, if you’re the calculating type, you can use an online macronutrient calculator to tell you how much fat (and protein and carbohydrates, the other two macronutrients) constitutes a certain percentage of your daily intake.

So, let’s say you’re aiming to eat 1,800 calories per day. You’d want to have about 60 grams of fat per day. To give you an idea of what that looks like in terms of what you’re actually eating, here are a few common foods and how much fat they have per serving :

• 2 tablespoons of peanut butter: 17 grams

• 1 tablespoon of oil (olive, canola, etc.): 14 grams

• 1 ounce (about 20 to 24) almonds: 14 grams

• 1/4 avocado: 7.5 grams

But You Probably Should Eat Fewer Carbs
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