The mere word of inclusion of fat in a food label now-a-days triggers an alarm bell. We have read a number of times the role of fats in our body and how they are responsible for making our life hell as they are responsible for heart attacks and stroke in a person. But it will be a good idea to understand the requirement of fats in our body. Fat has a good role to play in our body as we are aware that dietary fats have been found essential for our body as they give energy and helps in the cell growth. Moreover, dietary fats also help in protecting our organs and assist in keeping our body warm. Fats also absorb nutrients in our body.
Major category of dietary fats
There are four important types of dietary fats present in the food we eat viz., saturated fats, transfats, monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats. As with every passing day most of us have become cautious as to what we eat in our daily life. If we read the carton of the food we eat, we can know what type of fat we are eating. For example, we have come across the fact that saturated and transfats are bad for our body. You can easily recognize about saturated and transfats, as they are more solid at room temperature for example they look alike a stick of butter. Did you know that saturated fats are found naturally in different food items? A majority of saturated fats come from animal sources which also includes meat and dairy products also. For example, you can found saturated fats in beef, pork, poultry with skin, lard and cream, cheese, butter etc. Meanwhile monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats are available in liquid form like liquid vegetable oil which has been safe when we eat it.
How fats affects on a person’s cholesterol level?
You have read about different types of fats we encounter daily in our diet. But it has been the bad fats or saturated and trans-fats which are responsible for raising the bad cholesterol (LDL) levels in our body. Thus this type of saturated fats increases the risk of heart disease and stroke. On the other hand monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats lowers the bad cholesterol levels in the body and has been found beneficial when we consume it in moderation.
Limiting saturated fats
The American Heart Association has recommended that a person should limit the amount of saturated fats which you eat to lower than 7% of total daily calories you take. For example, when you take 2,000 calories per day then the saturated fat you take should be no more than 140 of them.
Replacing foods high in saturated fats with monounsaturated fats?
You can replace foods which are high is saturated fats with monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fats by taking liquid vegetable oil and eating fish and nuts. You should also replace some of the meat with beans or legumes. But you should remember that if you take food rich in fat moderately try to burn the calories would help you remain healthy.