Bananas, carrots, lettuce and pinto beans are all less expensive per portion than french fries, soft drinks, ice cream or ground beef. View full sizeJeff Zelevansky, Whole Foods Market via APThe USDA says eating fruits, vegetables and grains can be just as cheap or cheaper than eating junk food. Whether it’s for disease prevention or weight loss, a low-fat diet is one of the most popular.
It's essential, however, that your fats are the healthy kind: monounsaturated and polyunsaturated, such as those found in olive oil, avocado and salmon.
SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTERGet fresh recipes, sales flyers, coupons and helpful tips delivered to your inbox every week. Select a storeSelecting a store allows you to see that store's content throughout the site, such as sales, store events, and more. With so much emphasis on healthy fat food choices, as well as the controversy between high-fat and low-fat diets, it can be tough to figure out what's best for a balanced healthy eating plan. When you break down your food choices for the day and compare them to a moderate ratio of fats to carbohydrates and protein, it's so much easier to refine and then be confident in those choices. The first time I tracked my food intake for a week, and then analyzed it with an online calorie calculator, I was shocked at the impact oil had on the ratio of fat in my diet. The truth is, whole food sources of fats are much better not only for health, but for maintaining a balanced ratio of fat. 1 ounce of whole olives are 28 grams and have 40.6 calories, of which 88% are from fat, 3% are from protein and 9% are from carbs. That was one of the central ideas I incorporated when I put together the 28 Day Healthy Meal Plan - how to cook delicious foods with very little oil, and enjoy whole food sources of fats over oils. My favorite healthy fat food sources are whole grains, nuts, seeds, avocados and occasionally (since they're prepared with a lot of salt) olives. Although it's good to get some healthy fat foods in your diet, keep in mind that fat calories add up quickly and you don't need to try too hard to get enough. To reach your full daily fat intake (based on a 2000 calorie diet) from a variety of whole foods, you can eat half a cup of oats, 2 Tbsp ground flax, a quarter of a cup of walnuts, two tablespoons of pumpkin seeds, an avocado, half a cup of chickpeas, one tablespoon of tahini (to make hummus with those chickpeas) and an ounce of green olives.
Going back to oils, consider that just one tablespoon of oil takes over almost 25% of that daily fat intake, almost as much as that quarter cup of walnuts so they'd be the easiest to cut out to make room for the oil. Half a cup of oats has 45 calories from fat (15% of its total calories) - 9% of your 500 daily fat calories.
Two tablespoons of ground flax seeds have 50 calories from fat (66% of its total calories) - 10% of your 500 daily fat calories.

A quarter cup of walnuts has 164 calories from fat (83% of its total calories) - 32.8% of your 500 daily fat calories. Two tablespoons of pumpkin seeds have 108 calories from fat (71% of its total calories) - 21.6% of your 500 daily fat calories. Half an avocado has 88 calories from fat (77% of its total calories) - 18% of your 500 daily fat calories. Half a cup of chickpeas has 18 calories from fat (13% of its total calories) - 3.6% of your 500 daily fat calories. One tablespoon of tahini has 67 calories from fat (76% of its total calories) - 13.4% of your 500 daily fat calories. The total of these whole healthy fat foods add up to 576 calories from fat - right on target! Boost your energy levels, drop the extra pounds, get all the right nutrients, save time, and stop wasting food. My goal is to help you add more energy and health to your daily life than you could ever imagine.
You can get your energy back, drop the extra pounds, clear up your skin, and build a more vibrant life. Put the energy drink down and keep your engine revved throughout the day by filling up on our picks for the best energy-packed whole foods. Whole-grain cereal and low-fat milk is the ideal way to start your day on all cylinders or to refuel after a workout. Put your freshest produce finds to delicious use in our easy dinners ready in 30 minutes or less.
If you prefer chickpeas to chicken, keep in mind you still need 2 to 3 servings of protein per day. If you have to cut out fat from your diet, concentrate on the bad kind: saturated (found in red meats, cheese and butter, among other full-fat animal products) and trans fats (found in fried and fast foods and anything containing hydrogenated and partially-hydrogenated oils).
Studies have shown that these substitutes are often less satisfying (low-fat often means low-flavor), which can lead to overeating. Although I was using much less oil than listed in recipes (1 Tbsp for 2 people rather than 2 or even 4 Tbsp), its concentrated calories from fat was throwing my whole balance off. That's because fats are accompanied by carbohydrates (including fiber) and protein in whole foods.
If you're wondering how there can possibly be this huge of a difference, the secret is that the whole olives are made up of 21.1 grams (75% by weight) of water.

Whole grains, although not nearly as concentrated in fats as the other foods, have a decent amount of quality fats.
The walnuts are not only more fun to eat and taste better, but they have lots of nutrients other than just the fat, whereas the oil is pure fat and nothing else. One tablespoon of olive oil has 119 calories from fat (100% of its total calories) - 23.8% of your 500 daily fat calories. Not only does it serve up an energizing mix of protein, fiber, and slowly-digested complex carbs, it’s ready in less than a minute. These 10 meatless foods are high in protein and will help to keep your body strong and healthy, sans the meat. All rights reserved (About Us).The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Northeast Ohio Media Group LLC. Care must be taken even with plant-based oils that harden at cold temperatures, such as palm and coconut oils, as these are also high in saturated fat. Talk to a nutritionist and experiment with other ways to get satisfying flavor in healthier ways.
Oats, for example, are 15% fat by calories (the rest of the oat is made up of 15% protein and 70% carbohydrate, if you were curious). For even more muscle, choose a cereal that’s been fortified with iron, a mineral we need to form hemoglobin, which delivers oxygen throughout our bodies. Ultra low-fat diets, or those recommending below 10% caloric intake from fat, have been shown to greatly increase the risk of essential fatty acid (EFA) deficiencies. Remember, they're called "essential" for a reason: EFAs are the basic nutrients needed for optimal heart health, mental function, skin health and many other of the body's functions. Too little fat in the diet can also prevent the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins, such as A, D, E and K. Those following a low-fat diet might consider taking an EFA supplement; consult your doctor.

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