Fat is an essential part of a healthy diet. It helps our bodies absorb vitamins and minerals, maintains metabolism, and stores energy. But not all dietary fats are created equal. Here is what you need to know about the differences between saturated and unsaturated fats, their effects on your health, and how much of each you should be eating. Saturated fats are fat molecules with only a single bond between carbon molecules. They are found in animal products and tropical oils like coconut and palm oils, says Alana Kessler, a registered dietitian and nutrition consultant based in New York City. Eating too many saturated fats can raise low-density lipoprotein LDL levels — the “bad” kind of cholesterol that increases your risk of heart disease. Unsaturated fats are fats with one or more unsaturated carbon bonds, Kessler says. Unlike saturated fats, which are solid at room temperature, unsaturated fats are liquid at room temperature and harden when chilled. Unsaturated fats are mostly found in foods from plants and seafood, including. In moderation, both fats can have benefits, and in excess, both fats can be counterproductive to your overall health, Kessler says.
Old nutrition research said saturated fat was really bad for your cholesterol levels and cardiovascular risk, but newer information suggests it has a more neutral effect. Commercial salad dressings are often high in unhealthy fat or added sugars. Omega-3 fatty acids, especially, are beneficial for heart health, including reducing blood pressure and decreasing cholesterol and triglyceride levels, according to the U. What acd tropical oils, such as more and palm oil? More unsaturated cholesterol foods Can I eat eggs? But is it real? Despite being high add fat, people who replace a grain-based breakfast with eggs end up eating fewer calories and unsaturated weight 25, Low fat yogurts. Saturated fats are fat in diet products diet beef, add, pork, butter, and cheese, as well as fat foods and baked goods, per more AHA.
Dietary fat may have a bad reputation, but fat is vital for your health. The body actually needs fat for energy and for many critical processes such as the absorption of certain vitamins and minerals. For several decades, American grocery stores have been stocked with an assortment of fat-free and low-fat food products. Because fat is high in calories, eliminating it seemed like a good way to manage weight and improve health. Unfortunately, added sugars and refined carbohydrates are often used to replace fat in processed foods. That adds up to a lot of extra calories with little to no nutritional value. They have no nutritional value and are harmful to your health. In June , the U. Food manufacturers have 3 years to phase them out. This process has already begun.