Thursday, January 12, 2012

"Why Women Need Fat" - finally, a diet book I can get into

It's book review time again! Over the Christmas holidays, I got the chance to read Why Women Need Fat - How "Healthy" Food Makes Us Gain Excess Weight and the Surprising Solution to Losing It Forever by William D. Lassek, M.D. and Steven J. C. Gaulin, Ph. D.



BlogHer Book Club Reviewer


Normally, I do not choose to read diet books -- I can't even make it through most magazine articles about weight loss. But I found this book really interesting and easy-to-read.

The authors believe that American women are so much bigger today when compared to 40 years ago, because of our super-processed, pre-packaged diet. The convenience foods we buy that are "healthy" might not be.

The authors mainly blame our weight gain, especially around our middles, on the huge amount of omega-6 in our diet. A lot of the omega-6 comes from certain shelf-stable, very processed vegetable oils like corn and soybean. Omega-6 can lead to weight gain in our waistlines.

The increase of omega-6 comes with a decrease in omega-3. Omega 3s not only help our brains, but also can help us maintain a more natural weight. The increase in omega-6 and decrease in omega-3 combined to lead to our bigger waistlines.

According to the book, if we change our diets, our weights should be more like those of Americans 40 years ago, or more like those of European and Japanese women.

How to do that? Cut back on the products with things like corn or soybean oil high on the ingredient list. This includes margarine, mayonnaise, salad dressings and lots of other prepared foods. Instead look for natural products like butter and those made with canola and olive oils.

I have to admit that I really bought into what the authors wrote. We are already working our way there.

One of our biggest problems will be dropping the salad dressings. I had no clue they could be so bad for us! I mentioned the salad dressing issue to two friends who had lived in Europe and both said that people over there made their own salad dressings. Guess I'll have to start doing that.
They also said that food is a lot fresher over there.

The authors mention other issues, like our meat and eggs that come from animals fed a steady corn diet, instead of the more natural diet of grass. These products are also high in omega 6 because of the corn diet.

The best thing about this revelation for Bob? I'm no longer fussing about eating the deer he killed over Thanksgiving. I figure that meat was definitely grass-fed and a lot better for us, and cheaper than grass-fed beef.

Our food budget may have to go up some, but I think the bigger adjustment for us will be changing the way we think about foods.

Any of you have thoughts about this? I've been trying to discuss this book with my extended family members, and they don't really want to talk about it with me.

*This is a paid review for BlogHer Book Club, but the opinions expressed are my own.

4 Comments:

Blogger Ann Wyse said...

Fascinating!! I didn't know that about Omega-6 versus Omega-3. And I had NO idea how it tied to corn!

Hmmm... The corn industry in the US scares me a little more each year. From Monsanto and GM crops to ethanol and now Omega-3s....

I think I need to read this book.

8:39 AM  
Blogger lisa said...

Sounds good to me. I've been trying to eat better too, and had already stopped buying margarine much to my husband's dismay. Sort of the less manufactured the better approach. Give Newman's Own a look. It's a lot higher than say Kraft but there is nothing weird in it. In fact, I've started bying Newman's Own everything because of that. They have a low cal dressing with ginger in it that's good!

10:24 AM  
Blogger mpotter said...

the hard part is eating better.
for any reason.
the bad stuff is yummy.

i eat no condiments at all, and i'm still faced with a lot of those same problems.

luckily, i feed my daughter much much better than i eat- and i'm trrrryyying to be a decent model for her.
it's always something, isn't it?

3:49 PM  
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