Building High-Performance Muscle™

Man on a Mission
An interview with Udo Erasmus,
the Father of Fats


If dietary fat had a different name than bodyfat, maybe fewer people would be fat "phobic." To the general public, the very word "fat" carries a negative connotation. It's associated with heart disease, cancer, hardening of the arteries, and ugly body flab. Yet, despite the similarity in sound, the two are as different as violins and violence.

Most bodybuilders are aware of this — they know that fats are essential. Fats provide energy. They help the body to burn stored fat. They're also necessary for hormone production (including our favorite, testosterone). But there's more to the slippery stuff than you may realize. That's what Udo Erasmus is out to prove.

Udo is one of the original pioneers in the study of fats. Long before the Atkins diet, the Anabolic diet, and their subsequent descendants, the Zone and the ketogenic diets, Udo was advocating the proper use of fats for optimum health, immunity, and athletic performance.

Udo's academic credentials include a BS in zoology, an MA in psychology, a PhD in nutrition, and graduate studies in genetics and biochemistry. A major turning point in his career occurred back in 1980 when he was accidentally poisoned by pesticides. When traditional medicine was unable to provide help, Udo concluded that his health was his responsibility and sought the answers that he needed by fervently delving into the research literature. He also paid special attention to a misunderstood area:

    The effects of fats and oils on human health.

This meant tracking down thousands of original research studies, many of which were inaccessible to the public. Udo's investigation culminated in the writing of his groundbreaking book, "Fats That Heal, Fats That Kill."

Since the release of this landmark bestseller, Udo has set about preaching the gospel of good fat. If you'd like to have a better understanding of how fats can help you with your bodybuilding goals, you'll be interested to hear from the man reverently known as "His Royal Oiliness."


T: Hi, Udo. I understand that you're currently touring the country doing seminars. Can you tell us a little about that?

UE:

T: Are all bad fats saturated fats?

UE:

T: So hydrogenated fats [those that solidify at room temperature] are bigger culprits than saturated fat. This includes peanut butter, which is essentially peanuts and Crisco, isn't it?

UE:

T: Which of the essential oils are most beneficial to bodybuilders?

UE:

T: Do you recommend never cooking with oil? No fried eggs, no tomato sauce, not even broiled chicken?

UE:

T: So browning of meats is also out?

UE:

T: Oil in fruit juice?

UE:

T: Bodybuilders understand that fats are necessary for the production of testosterone. But do all fats increase hormone production, or is it specific fats?

UE:

T: How do prostaglandins fit into the picture? How do fats affect them?

UE:

T: Waiter, more oil here! I don't have to worry about getting too much, do I?

UE:

T: I imagine that's where one's instincts come into play. You "feel" weighed down by all of the fat.

UE:

T: Which is something that bodybuilders, especially those using anabolic enhancement, should be conscious about.

UE:

T: I understand that you believe gland meat to be superior to muscle meat.

UE:

T: Because liver is also the filter of the body's toxins?

UE:

T: Would you then recommend desiccated liver?

UE:

T: How is your concept different from the various high-fat diets that have recently gained popularity?

UE:

T: So it just can't be all bacon and rack of lamb...

UE:

T: Are you an advocate of low-carb diets?

UE:

T: Chitosan has become a popular supplement. What's your take on using it for those occasional "bad fat" meals?

UE:

T: Is the blend available in a capsule? Some people may have a problem drinking the oil straight.

UE:

T: Nothing is as nasty as cod-liver oil.

UE:

T: Last question, what's the lesser of two evils: butter or oil?

UE:

T: Thanks, Udo. I'll keep it in mind.

UE:


Going into this story, I thought that I had a pretty good grasp on the benefits of fats and oils. Coming out of it, I realize that my supplementation of essential fatty acids from the "right" oils has been drastically deficient. Time to up those omega-3s!

Admittedly, some of Udo's recommendations may be difficult to "swallow." Boiled meat? Steamed fish? I don't know about you, but a life without charred meat isn't worth living, as far as I'm concerned.

Nevertheless, Udo gave me a lot to think about. From here on, flaxseed oil won't just be a "now and then" supplement. It should be a part of the bodybuilder's daily intake, every bit as important as protein and vitamins.

And maybe I'll pass on the Wendy's Double Classic cheeseburger today. Grilled chicken with extra-virgin olive oil? That doesn't sound so bad.

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