Fats in the diet are essential to maintain a healthy self. Fats are important for many body functions and you are required to eat a certain amount of fat in your daily diet. Fat keeps you warm, gives protection to your organs, and assists your body to absorb and move required nutrients around your body. Fats in diet also help in the production of hormones. However, various fats are more favorable than others, hence, having too much fat in a diet in unhealthy. Therefore, it is always suggested to consume fats to a specific limit and the excessive use of fats in the diet creates several problems.
Types of Fats
Fats in the diet are categorized according to their structure. Different types of fats have different characteristics and it reacts in different manner inside the body. Some of the saturated fats which are mainly found in different animal products increase blood cholesterol. The increase in blood cholesterol is one of the major risk factors in coronary heart disease. Polyunsaturated and Mono-unsaturated fats act in lowering blood cholesterol. Blood cholesterols are also of two types. High-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol and Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. LDL is regarded as bad cholesterol because it works on the silting up and narrowing of the arteries, which in turn, leads to different types of heart diseases and stroke. HDL cholesterol is regarded as good cholesterol due to its work in cleaning the arteries and thus minimizing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
There are different groups of fats with each of the groups having its own behavior inside the human body. Fats in the diet can be classified into four different groups Saturated, Polyunsaturated, Mono-unsaturated, and Trans fats. The intake of saturated fats increases the possibility of heart disease due to the increase in the level on blood cholesterol. These types of fats are available in fast foods and in various commercial products like pastries and biscuits. Polyunsaturated fats and Mono-unsaturated fats help to lower blood cholesterol. Polyunsaturated fatty acids have a little better action than mono-unsaturated fatty acids. Thus, you can replace the fats in your diet with saturated fats to any one of the mono or polyunsaturated fats.
Trans-fatty acids are very rare in nature and can only be created in the rumen of sheep and cows, and are found only in very little amounts in cheese, lamb, milk and beef. Trans-fatty acid is used during the production of some table margarine and in solid spreads which are used in the food industry to produce baked products such as pastries, pies, buns, cakes and biscuits.
Side effects of fats
Fats are also required to be included in our diet but the quantity should be limited otherwise it may create some of the major health problems. Some of the common food items containing fats include margarine spreads like canola or olive oil-based choices, peanuts, cashews, canola and peanut oils, oils such as olive, avocado, hazelnuts and almonds. These come under Mono-unsaturated fats. There are various other fats in our diet that we consume in our food daily.
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