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Weight Loss

Good Fats for Weight Loss: The Easy Add-In One MD Calls “Extraordinary”

Bonus: Our delicious muffin recipe makes it simple to get the benefits!


What do avocados, walnuts and dark chocolate have in common? They’re all packed with good fats, an ingredient that can help make slimming more effortless. “Just by adding good fats throughout the day, most women will see a pleasant surprise when they step on the scale,” shares Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, author of 60 Seconds to Slim and Pain Erasers. Her top fat-rich picks: simple mix-ins like flaxseeds, chia seeds and walnuts — all loaded with omega-3s, the most powerful good fat. Indeed, good fats for weight loss are so powerful, they helped 58-year-old Fran Bronski shed 80 pounds in all, leaving her to rave, “Good fats are my miracle!” Here, discover how you can benefit from good fats for weight loss.

What are good fats?

Good fats are options that are natural, mostly unsaturated and have a powerful ability to alleviate blood-sugar issues and inflammation. That’s vital since the two conditions are “at the root of nearly every chronic disease,” explains Cleveland Clinic functional medicine expert Mark Hyman, MD, bestselling author of The Pegan Diet and Eat Fat, Get Thin. “The right fats help us achieve optimal health.” (Click through to learn about the fat MCT oil for weight loss.)

From olive oil and avocado to dark chocolate, good fats are found in many plants. But experts believe omega-3 fats from fish and certain nuts/seeds provide the biggest benefits. One recent study even found that a daily serving of omega-3–rich sardines slashes diabetes risk for over 78% of us.

Not a sardine fan? No problem. Enjoy omega-3–rich pancakes and muffins instead. “Omega-3s from sources like flaxseeds and walnuts are affordable and so easy to incorporate into food you already love eating,” says Schoffro Cook. What’s more, they set us up for automatic weight loss…

Related: Nutritionist: Adding *This* Butter Back Into Your Diet Can Break Through a Weight Loss Plateau So You Lose Faster Than Ever

How good fats for weight loss boost metabolism

All good fats have an effect on our hormones “that tells our bodies to stop hoarding fat and speed up our metabolism,” says Schoffro Cook. Omega-3s just do it to the max. For example, there’s evidence that just 3 grams of omega-3s a day — the amount in each muffin from the recipe below — will “increase resting metabolism by 5% in 12 weeks,” says Lisa M. Davis, PhD, a Johns Hopkins–trained obesity researcher. Evidently, omega-3s have a such a strong anti-inflammatory effect, they help “restore normal cellular function and may improve thyroid function.” So we end up burning extra calories around the clock, which translates to a lot of weight loss, even without counting calories or carbs.

Want proof? In a study called “extraordinary” by How Not to Diet author Michael Greger, MD, a group of volunteers who got healthy-eating advice plus ground flaxseeds to mix in their meals lost 21 pounds in 12 weeks; meanwhile, a group given the same advice but no flax lost just 7 pounds. Flax tripled results. “Those are astonishing numbers for a study that added rather than removed calories,” notes Dr. Greger. (Click through for more flaxseed benefits.)

Related: Scientists: This Simple Hack Makes the Mediterranean Diet 5x More Effective for Women Over 50

How good fats for weight loss tame hunger

A metabolism boost isn’t the only factor at play. Omega-3s also soothe an overactive appetite. In fact, scientists using brain scans found that an area of the brain that suppresses hunger and cravings literally “lights up” after we eat walnuts, per Harvard’s Christos Mantzoros, MD, PhD. Adds Schoffro Cook: “You can still enjoy your favorite treats — you just won’t feel that same urge to go overboard. So you eat a little less as you supercharge health and fat burning.”

Good fats for weight loss results: Fran Bronski, 58

Before and after photos of Fran Bronski, who learned how to use coconut oil to lose weight and dropped 80 lbs
Laura DeSantis-Olsson, Getty

After a lifetime of fad diets, Fran Bronski developed a sluggish thyroid and hit 220 pounds. She struggled to lose even with thyroid meds and keto — until she saw a documentary on the power of good fats. “I started having flaxseeds, almonds and chia seeds as ‘cereal’ at breakfast,” she recalls. At lunch, she added walnuts, salmon, omega-3 eggs, avocado and MCT oil. “Sometimes, I was barely hungry for dinner!” Her oversize appetite shrinking, healthier choices became effortless, and she says, “I could feel my energy coming back. In three weeks, I lost 30 pounds. I was shocked—and thrilled!”

What’s more, she was able to indulge in treats without the slightest urge to go overboard. “I lost 80 pounds and even got off my thyroid meds,” says Fran. “I feel better than ever!” (Click through for more on how Fran used coconut oil as part of her journey.)

Good fats for weight loss success: Sadie Cherichetti, 80

It’s all well and good if omega-3s help younger women slim down. But do they help at every stage of life? “Yes, they do!” says Sadie Cherichetti, 80, whose daughter Fran suggested incorporating good fats to see if it would bring down her weight and blood pressure. “I’d just lost my husband, and it made me worried about my own health,” recalls Sadie. “So I said, ‘Let’s give it a try.’”

Sadie found she loved morning smoothies blended with flaxseeds, nuts and fruit. “They’re very filling and delicious!” She also enjoyed a whole avocado at lunch, plus nuts as snacks and regular salmon suppers. Her body responded. “I lost 28 pounds while feeling so satisfied. My blood pressure meds were lowered too.” Sadie enjoys her favorite treats while continuing to slim down. “I definitely recommend good fats to everyone, especially women over 60. You’ll lose weight and feel so young!”

Delicious good fats for weight loss meals

Getting a serving of good fats at most sittings is just plain healthy — particularly if you swap them in place of processed foods. But for the most dramatic weight loss, add 1–2 Tbs. of ground flaxseeds at breakfast (ideas below, or mix it in a smoothie or oatmeal). Aim for an additional serving of flax, walnuts, chia, omega-3 eggs or salmon at lunch and/or dinner. Another tip: Listen to your body, eating only foods you enjoy until you feel full. (Click through to learn about the benefits of grinding your chia seeds.)

Pounds off pancakes

Mash 1 ripe banana with fork. Mix in 1 omega-3 egg and 1 Tbs. ground flaxseed. Cook pancake-style, 3 minutes per side, in coconut oil. Top as desired.

Upgraded nuggets

Blitz 3⁄4 cup nuts, 1⁄3 cup flaxseed, and pinch seasoning. Dip 1 lb. chicken tenders in a beaten omega-3 egg, then into flax mix. Sauté in coconut oil till golden and cooked through.

Sweet power bites

Mix 1 cup oats, 2⁄3 cup nut butter, 1⁄2 cup ground flax,1⁄2 cup dark chocolate chips, sweetener to taste and pinch salt. Chill. Roll into 16 balls.

Bonus recipe: Get-slim muffins

Plate of muffins made with flaxseed to increase intake of good fats for weight loss

It’s easy to bake a tasty breakfast or snack packed with omega-3s. Makes 12 muffins.


  • 1 cup ground flaxseeds
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • ½ cup Swerve sugar substitute
  • 3 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 Tbs. baking powder
  • 5 omega-3 eggs
  • ½ cup MCT or melted coconut oil
  • ½ cup almond milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts


  1. Mix flax, oats, Swerve, spice, baking powder and a pinch of salt; set aside.
  2. Beat eggs, oil, milk and vanilla until frothy.
  3. Gently stir wet mixture into dry mixture. Fold in nuts.
  4. Spoon into lined muffin tin. Bake at 350ºF until a pick in center comes out clean, 17–19 min.

This content is not a substitute for professional medical advice or diagnosis. Always consult your physician before pursuing any treatment plan.

A version of this article originally appeared in our print magazine, Woman’s World.

For more ways healthy fats boost slimming, check out these stories:

MCT Oil Is Officially The Longest Running Weight Loss ‘Fad.’ Here’s Why It’s More Popular Than Eve

Adding a Few Spoonfuls of Coconut Oil to Your Diet Can Speed Metabolism Like Keto Does — Without The Carb Counting

This Surprise Olive Oil Trick Is Helping Women Over 50 Balance Blood Sugar to Lose Weight Effortlessly

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