Don’t skip the salad dressing

In yet another blow to the fat-free industry, recent research shows that using fat-rich salad dressings may help your body absorb even more nutrients from salad.

So, once again, you can crave your fat and eat it too–just choose wisely.

What do I mean by that? Well, check out the details of the study, published in the June issue of the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research…

Researchers fed subjects salads topped with a saturated fat, a monounsaturated fat, or a polyunsaturated fat. Polyunsaturated fats are the most common fats in our food supply. Things like corn oil, peanut oil, safflower oil. You know–the ones people use every day and think are “healthy.”

But when they measured the participants’ blood levels of fat-soluble carotenoids–compounds such as lutein, lycopene, beta-carotene, and zeaxanthin–researchers discovered an interesting phenomenon…

The monounsaturated fat dressing helped subjects absorb more of these essential nutrients. And unlike the other two types of dressings, it didn’t matter how much the subjects used.

With saturated and polyunsaturated fats, subjects had to eat quite a hefty amount (four tablespoons) to get any benefit. But the enhanced absorption was the same whether the participants ate four tablespoons or 1/4 of a tablespoon of the monounsaturated dressing.

As you know by now, I’ve been extolling the virtues of a diet rich in monounsaturated fat for years (ever since I published my book, The Hamptons Diet). And there’s one particular type of monounsaturated fat that I think trumps all the others–macadamia nut oil.

MacNut oil has one of the highest monounsaturated fat contents of any oil. It also has a super high smoke point, so you can use it for any type of cooking (and it won’t decompose on your stove). And it has a light, buttery flavor that simply enhances the food you are cooking. Rather than overwhelming it the way some olive oils can.

There is simply no other way to say it–monounsaturated fats rule the fat kingdom. And MacNut Oil reigns supreme.

“Meal triacylglycerol profile modulates postprandial absorption of carotenoids in humans.” Mol Nutr Food Res 2012; 56(6): 866-877