Fats, fats, yummy fats! We are programmed to love a combo of fat and salt, or fat and sugar – think French fries, or cake. But are fats bad for us? Definitely not! In fact, they are essential. Hence my delicious mayo recipe (intolerance friendly of course, with egg white-free version, oil options for low salicylates and citric acid free).
Most fats are great for us!
There have been a lot of mixed messages about fats. Do they cause heart disease? Do they make us fat? And what about sugar, is that really the fattening one now? In fact, the obesity epidemic is proof that removing fat from our foods, and replacing it with sugar, is NOT the way to stay a healthy weight!
Even the myth that saturated fats are bad for our heart has been debunked by research. To see the studies, check out https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/5-studies-on-saturated-fat.
There is one type of fat, however, that we should all avoid! Trans fats. These are the ones that have been hydrogenated in a laboratory, making liquid oils into solids. They are used freely in margarines, fried fast food, baked goods from the supermarket, some meat pies, crackers and pizzas, and are strongly linked to heart disease, cancer and other disease. Look for 0% trans fats on labels, and replace margarine with butter, coconut oil or at a pinch, nuttelex (not a health food, but very low in trans fats).
Sugar actually makes us fat, not fat!
So, if fat doesn’t make us fat, how can sugar make us fat? Sugar is processed by the liver. One of the liver’s jobs is to turn any excess sugar we eat into fat and store it to use later… except later never comes for us, as we are never short of food. So we keep eating too much sugar, and too many processed carbs (that turn into sugar quicker than we can use them for energy). This pattern leads to gradual weight gain.
We need fats for a healthy body
Fats, on the other hand, are utilised very readily by our bodies. The term essential fatty acids (EFAs) means we can’t produce these fats in our body, so we need to consume them. They are required for healthy skin, hair, nails and gut. We need to eat fat in order to absorb fat soluble vitamins, A, D and E. EFAs are also used to make hormones. They are important for mood, as they are essential for producing serotonin, our happy hormone.
There are 3 main types of fats – omega-3, found is fish, which is anti-inflammatory, omega-6 found in nuts and seeds (and especially important if you have a condition known as Pyrroles) and omega-9, the one in olive oil.
Now we know fats are good for us, let’s make some delicious, creamy mayo! Great dolloped on veggies, meats and fish.
Egg Yolk Mayo
GF, DF, egg white-free variation, low salicylates variation, citric acid free
1 whole egg OR 2 egg yolks (separated from the whites. Crack egg gently on a flat surface and carefully break shell in half. Do this over a bowl and let the white pour out, keeping the yolk in one half. Gently pour the yolk between the two half shells, until all the white is removed.)
1 cup olive oil (refined, not extra virgin, or another low flavour oil. Grapeseed and rice bran work well and are low in salicylates.)
1 heaped teaspoon Dijon, seeded or French mustard
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar (for citrus free. Can also use lemon juice.)
2 pinches sea salt
Separate eggs, if using yolks only. Add egg or egg yolks to food processor with mustard, vinegar and salt.
Mix briefly. With mixer on, very slowly pour olive oil from a jug into food processor. Note that if you do this step too quickly, the mixture will separate. Pour in the thinnest stream possible.
Store in a clean glass jar in the fridge for up to a week (make sure you are using fresh eggs!).