Castlewood Eating Disorder Treatment Center Blog

Why does my body need food that provides fat? What does fat fuel do for you?

This nutrient group gets a negative rap simply because of its name. Many clients believe that “if I eat fat, I will be fat”. That voice? The disordered eating, not the truth. This fuel group serves many important functions in your body, especially during the recovery process. Fat fuel actually provides the structural foundation of our brain cells, nerve cells and hormones. The brain, nerve and hormonal cells are all made up of a combination of proteins and fats – literally, the foundational structure of the cells themselves. Other work functions of this fuel group:
  • Provides linoleic acid, an essential fatty acid that must be obtained from food. “Essential” means the body cannot make it, but must have it – so food sources are critical. Linoleic acid works to keep a healthy brain, skin and hair, bone density, energy production and reproductive health.
  • Provides transportation for  four critical vitamins: A, D, E and K. Vitamin A is necessary for healthy skin and eyes, Vitamin D for healthy bones, Vitamin E for a healthy immune system and Vitamin K for efficient blood clotting. If little to no fat is available from our foods, these key vitamins do not have any means of transportation to get to their job and do their work. And a side note: if your body does not have enough body fat stores, it does not have enough storage place to keep these vitamins readily available in the first place.
  • Helps stabilize blood sugars and slow down the digestion and absorption of energy, working together in balance with proteins and fibers.
Without enough fuel from fat sources, your brain, skin and hair health, your bones, your reproductive health, your immune system, your ability to clot blood when wounded or to prevent bruising, and your energy level will all be compromised.  Fat fuel balances the carbohydrate fuel group by prolonging energy and carrying the fat soluble vitamins that are found in vegetables and fruits around the body so they can do their jobs. Fat fuel balances the protein fuel group by carrying the fat soluble vitamins found in dairy and other protein foods to where your body needs them, and combining with other proteins to create strong foundational cell structure and a strong immune system. Fats matter …for healing, for recovery and for optimal health and wellness.