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Fats in the diet – their types, role and what fats are worth choosing? – Health Wprost

Fats in the diet - their types, role and what fats are worth choosing?  - Health Wprost

Fats contain 2 times more calories than proteins and carbohydrates, but you should not abandon their consumption, since fatty acids contained in different fats are necessary for the course of many biological reactions. However, you need to know what fats to eat so as not to harm your health.

fat cracking

Dietary fats can be divided according to several criteria into “bad fats,” which, among other things, increase the risk of heart disease and cardiovascular disease, leading to increased levels of total cholesterol, and “good fats,” which are a source of healthy fatty acids.

The simplest analysis of fats that are often found in our diet is based on their origin. We distinguish animal fats, which should not be taken in excess; Because it belongs to the group of harmful fats, as well as vegetable fats, most of which include fats with a beneficial effect, for example. On the blood circulation and the general condition of the body.

Fats differ not only in origin but also in the degree of processing. The more processed fats, the lower their biological value, which reduces the nutritional value of the product. Interestingly, carbohydrates, which are often consumed in excessive quantities, are primarily responsible for the accumulation of fat in the body. For dietary fats to contribute to obesity, they must be eaten in very large quantities. It must be remembered that both the lack of fat in the diet and its excess are harmful to health, and translate into the functioning of the body. A diet low in fat can lead, among other things, to serious deficiencies in vitamins A, D, E and K, dermatitis, disturbances in the functioning of the circulatory system, the nervous system, and the immune system.

Fats in the diet – types of fats

Fats must be in the human diet. You can’t give it up completely, but you should pay attention to the sources from which we get our energy. The pricier component of the diet should cover about 35% of your daily energy needs. We divide fats into animal fats and vegetable fats, such as vegetable oils.

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Unhealthy animal fats

Animal fats do not have a positive effect on our health, because they supply the body with saturated fats. The group of animal fats includes lard, bacon, fats and milk fats found in butter, milk, and cream, as well as the fats we supply to the body by eating fatty meats, deli meats and delicacies. It is not necessary to completely eliminate animal fats from the diet, because some of them, such as butter, are a good source of vitamins and fat-soluble fatty acids. Butter, in reasonable quantities, is recommended to spread, among other things, in the diet of children and adolescents. Do not fry in butter because it does not resist high temperatures. The exception is natural clarified butter, which can be used during heat treatment.

Important! Animal fats provide our bodies with saturated fats, which contribute to the development of many diseases, including the heart and blood circulation, so not everyone should eat them. Saturated fatty acids should be eliminated from the diet for people at risk of, among other things, atherosclerosis, the elderly, overweight and obesity. It is important to remember that the saturated fats contained in animal fats contribute to an increase in cholesterol levels and an increase in the concentration of triglycerides in the blood. An excess of fat in the diet, like an excess of carbohydrates, over time begins to accumulate in adipose tissue and leads, among other things, to lubrication of vital internal organs.

Not all animal fats are harmful. The exception is fish fat. Both oily sea fish and freshwater fish provide our bodies with healthy fats that have a positive impact on overall health. Fish fat is a source of vitamins A, D, E and contains essential fatty acids, essential fatty acids.

healthy vegetable fats

The second group of fats are healthy vegetable fats that provide the body with unsaturated fats. In this case, we are mostly dealing with fats that have beneficial effects on health, which contain unsaturated essential fatty acids. Among the unsaturated fats, there are monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids, which differ in terms of their chemical composition.

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Monounsaturated fatty acids include palmitoleic acid, oleic acid, and ellidic acid. The group of polyunsaturated fatty acids ia linoleic acid, alpha-linolenic acid, DHA and EPAS, as well as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Olive oil is an excellent source of healthy fats.

Vegetable fats are also found in saturated fats. The record holders for unhealthy saturated fats are refined coconut oil and palm oil, which contain more saturated fatty acids than animal fats. In other vegetable fats, the proportion of saturated fatty acids is low.

Fat in the diet – the role of fat

Fat in the human body has many important functions. They are not only an essential source of energy and fat-soluble vitamins, but they are also involved in many biological reactions. Necessary, among other things for the proper functioning of the endocrine system, they affect the work of the nervous and cardiovascular systems, as well as protect the internal organs.

From the point of view of food technology, fats are the carriers of flavor, which also increases the calorie content of ready meals. For health reasons, you should eat processed fats as little as possible.

In particular, you should avoid heat treatment of fats, even if they are resistant to high temperatures, because fried foods are not good for your health. By consuming healthy vegetable fats, we provide the body with, among other things, monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids that are very important for the proper functioning of the body. A diet low in unhealthy saturated fats quickly translates into general health, including for serious nervous system disorders.

What fats to choose?

It is better to choose vegetable fats that provide the body with unsaturated fatty acids, including oleic acid, and a source of omega fatty acids. Vegetable oils and oils, such as grape seed oil, linseed oil, olive oil, and rapeseed oil, are especially recommended as part of a healthy diet.

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The nutrition of a healthy person may include a small amount of animal fats, but a healthy diet should provide the body with mainly vegetable fats. Unfortunately, not all vegetable fats are healthy. Among vegetable fats, we can also find products with a destructive effect on health, for example, hydrogenated vegetable fats in which there are carcinogenic trans fatty acids. Trans fats include hydrogenated vegetable oil (vegetable margarine), which is often used in frying and baking. Consumption of trans isomers leads, inter alia, to changes in cell membranes.

Bearing in mind the importance of rational nutrition, animal fats should be used in moderation by young, healthy and not endangered, for example. Arteriosclerosis.


The nutrition of the patient and people at risk of disease should include, first of all, healthy fats of vegetable origin. It should be noted that the source of important nutrients is not only excreted fats, that is, products with a high fat content, such as oil and olive oil, but also constituent fats contained in foods that supply the body with dairy products, meat, eggs and seeds. and oilseeds. Fats important for health can also be found in fatty sea fish.

To maintain good health, we must meet at least 3% of our daily energy needs by consuming fats rich in essential fatty acids. Unsaturated fatty acids are found in abundance in unrefined, cold-pressed oils and oils, such as sunflower oil, peanut oil, soybean oil, linseed oil, grapeseed oil, and olive oil, as well as in oily fish, avocados, and oilseeds. drill and nut;

Regardless of age and health status, hardened fats should be avoided because they contain harmful trans isomers. These types of fats are an important component among others of sweets, sweets, salty snacks and other highly processed products that should not be included in a healthy diet.


Read also:
Low-carb or low-fat diet – which is better for weight loss?

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