Eat Fat To Lose Fat

healthy fatsIf you want to lose weight, you should follow a low fat diet, right? That’s what traditional dieting and weight loss advice would have you believe. But the research tells another story.

According to the Harvard School of Public Health, the low fat diet craze that began in the 1990s has prompted a couple decades worth of misinformation. The folks at Harvard had this to say about low fat diets:

“A growing body of evidence has been pointing to its inadequacy for weight loss or prevention of heart disease and several cancers.”

You may be wondering what this “growing body of evidence” consists of. Let’s take a look.

Low Fat Diets: What the Research Says

According to a study conducted by researchers at Cornell University, putting low fat labels on snack foods encouraged study participants to eat up to 50 percent more food because they assumed the low fat version of the food to be healthier.

Another study conducted at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine  found that it took study participants an average of 45 days to lose 10 pounds on a high fat diet and exercise program compared to an average of 70 days for study participants who exercised and ate a high-carbohydrate, low-fat diet.

And finally, a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine that compared weight loss on a low carb,  Mediterranean, or low fat diet concluded that Mediterranean diets higher in healthy monounsaturated fats are effective alternatives to low-fat diets.

The Skinny on Fat

Rather than eating more low fat foods, recent dietary guidelines suggest you should focus on eating the right types of fat from the right sources. This means:

  • More monounsaturated fats from sources like olive oil, avocados, and nuts
  • More Omega-3 polyunsaturated fats from sources like walnuts, flaxseed, and fish
  • Some saturated fats from sources like coconut oil, raw cocoa, and meat and dairy from pasture-raised animals
  • No trans fats

The Bottom Line – Eat Fat To Lose Fat?

Eating more calories than you burn off, whether it’s from fat or carbohydrates, will lead to weight gain and put you at a higher risk for disease. But the latest and greatest evidence suggests that following a low fat diet may not be the best approach if you want to lose weight.

There’s no magic formula to weight loss. It comes down to eating the right foods and doing it on a consistent basis. As with most things in life, balance is key. Eat healthy sources of fats and balance it with lean protein, whole grain carbohydrates, and lot of vegetables and fruits. These healthy eating habits can help set you up for a lifetime of good health.

What do you think about eating fat to lose fat? Have you ever tried it? Share your thoughts with us!

Scott Christ

About Scott Christ

Scott Christ helps people looking to get in the best shape of their life with all natural real food recipes, healthy eating tips, and free weight loss plans Connect with Scott here: Twitter | Facebook | Google Plus


  1. STEVE COX says:

    I love the title of the article, “eat fat to lose fat”. I love fatty food and have been always rebuked by my dear ones for this habit. I cannot resist some of my very favorite foods that are high in fatty acids and maybe that’s the reason for my overweight frame. Still, without going through the whole post, I can definitely say that eat fat to lose fat.

  2. Jack Thomson says:

    Different people have different definitions to weight loss regimes. Eat fat to lose fat is the new definition and I really like the concept, if it is actually helpful. Scott, thank you for the information. Maybe, I will give it a try. Will also share it with my mom, for she is a food lover and at the same time struggling hard to lose weight.

    • Scott Christ Scott @ The Healthy Eating Guide says:

      Jack: here are some simple tips to help your mom lose weight:
      1. eat more foods with healthy fats like avocado, nuts, and salmon.
      2. eat less carbohydrates, especially highly processed “white” carbs.
      3. eat more vegetables and fruits.

  3. Jelson Cooer says:

    The article sounds really different from other weight loss articles, but I think the article is really convincing and makes you believe the importance of certain kinds of fat in our daily diet. Thank you Scott, the article is just wow.

  4. Sometimes it is so confusing what you should and shouldn’t do. :-( However, I love your blog and find a lot of useful information here.

    • Scott Christ Scott @ The Healthy Eating Guide says:

      I hear ya, Henry … lots of misinformation out there. So glad to hear you find my website helpful.

  5. Jimmie Waugh says:

    The article is really informative. The best part about the article is that the studies conducted by different institutions at different levels have been discussed and the article shares the highlights of every research and is quite convincing.

  6. Tim Gray says:

    Awesome post, I think the fat intake helps to stay energetic throughout the day. Yeah, right kind of fat intake is important to stay energetic and also helps to stay fit and in shape. Thank you Scott, for the article. Now I know what to eat to lose fat rather than struggling to lose weight by following a wrong weight loss plan.

  7. My mother jumped on the low fat bandwagon back in the day. I never believed it really helped other than causing me not to eat low-fat version of food at all. It’s all so bland tasting.

    • Scott Christ Scott @ The Healthy Eating Guide says:

      Great point, Emily. Fat adds flavor to food and the low-fat versions of most foods just don’t compare.

  8. ‘Eat Fat, To Lose Fat’ boy sign me up! Just Kidding, I loved the article Scott. It was well written and straight to the point which is always a bonus! Look forward to reading more articles from you.

  9. See it from friends all the time, so I have to agree with Cornell. The other day my friend is on a low fat diet, so she ate 2 low fat snacks. Asked why and her response “They are low fat soo can eat more” Was like “Umm no.. Low fat means they just usually label it so people like you eat and buy more thinking they are healthy”. She called me an idiot, so i stopped informing her.

  10. Tommy Woolf says:

    It is really interesting to know that present time researches stresses on the intake of fat rather than skipping it. Balanced diet means intake of right nutritional values rather than avoiding any particular element from our diet. If “eat fat to lose weight” is the state of present researches, I will love to take some extra fat to pamper myself.

  11. When I read the title I thought its some random ‘no-carb’ article, but as I read it I felt WOW, this is really interesting and different!

  12. I’m on a low fat diet and they really do work, I can tell the difference in the way my clothes fit as well as how I feel overall. I feel more healthier and I actually like this feeling, I loved this article because it had a lot of useful information that someone can actually use in their day to day life.

  13. Christine says:

    This is indeed something new and the title of the article is really catchy just as much as the content! Good job in posting up useful article!

  14. Fat is of course essential to our body and skipping the fat intake is not good at all. The ‘good’ cholesterol/fat and the ‘bad’ cholesterol/fat differs the amount of damage it does to your body. While eating healthily I think, one should follow Scott’s advice to see changes in weight fast.

  15. Scott Christ Scott @ The Healthy Eating Guide says:

    Thanks, Nicki. Glad you enjoyed it!

  16. ‘Eat Fat To Lose Fat’ I’ve NEVER heard of that before, I was surprised by this article. Great read and very informative!

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