Did you know some fats can be healthy for you?
Some people may be surprised to know that there are fats that are good for you. Although fats generally have a negative connotation, there are three different kinds of fat, and one of them can benefit your health.
• First of all, there is trans fat, which in the past years has been brought to the consumer’s attention as the fat to avoid in processed food, since it can raise your risk for heart related illnesses, diabetes, and stroke. Trans fat, or trans isomer fatty acids, have gone through the process of hydrogenation where hydrogen is added to processed food to extend their shelf life longer.
• Saturated fats are found mainly in animal products, and it’s best to limit your consumption of these fats.
• Unsaturated fats, which include both the polyunsaturated, and monounsaturated fats, are mainly found in fish, nuts, and in plant oils.
The unsaturated fats are the healthy fats for you since they can raise your HDL, or good blood cholesterol levels, and lower your LDL, or bad cholesterol. There is several food sources that contain unsaturated fats listed below. These food products are as listed:
• Peanut oil
• Olive oil
• Fish, which is rich in the polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acid, which studies have shown to help lower the risk of heart disease.
It’s recommended that fish should be added to your diet at least 2 times a week as part of a heart healthy diet. There are restrictions, however, for pregnant women and children, due to the increased presence of mercury in fish. It’s best to consult your doctor if you fall into these categories before adding fish to your diet.
New guidelines requiring labeling of trans fat content on food products can help the consumer make wiser choices for a healthier diet.