HEALTHY MEAL PLAN ‐ WHAT SHOULD YOU KNOW ABOUT UNSATURATED AND SATURATED FAT?
Fat is an essential part of our diet. It comes from animal and plant sources. Saturated fat comes mainly from animals and unsaturated fat comes mainly from plants. Saturated fat is more solid, for example: butter, lard or bacon. Unsaturated fat is liquid, for example olive oil. These are the fats which are visible. What you need to be aware of is that there are also hidden fats for example in biscuits, cheese, cream, sausages, crisps, sweets, fried food (chips, breadcrumbed chicken wings), essentially in processed food.
Fat is a very important source of energy. We do need it in every day life to move, work or exercise. Fat is also an essential nutrient as vitamins A, D, E, K (fat-soluble) can be absorbed and digested only in conjunction with fat.
In a balanced diet no more than one third of energy should come from fat (30%). No more than 10% of energy should come from saturated fat. Saturated fat is bad fat and it increases risk of coronary disease or stroke. Your body makes cholesterol from saturated fat. The more saturated fat you eat the higher your blood cholesterol levels. Cholesterol deposits in arteries, making them narrower. A high amount of cholesterol can block an artery causing heart attack or stroke.
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In a healthy diet it is important to avoid fatty meat and processed food. You can for example cut off the fatty bits or buy only lean meat. Instead of double cream, choose light single cream. Switch whole milk to skimmed milk, butter to margarine, cheddar to edam. Replace biscuits with dried fruits and nuts. Reduce the saturated fat and increase the good unsaturated fat in your diet. A good source of unsaturated fat is in olive oil, avocado or nuts. You will see results not only in your weight but also in your skin, hair, nails and you will have a strong and healthy heart!
Check how to burn fat and reduce cholesterol here.