With the recent findings regarding saturated fat hitting the headlines, it’s vital that the correct information about other fats and the dangers and benefits that surround the, are accurately outlined. The different types of fats fall into different categories when it comes to what they do for the body, with trans fats being the main type that should be avoided.
There are several types of fat – some good, some not so good. Good fats include, Monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats, like Omega-3 and Omega-6. Consuming these fats, mainly found in oily fish, such as salmon, and nuts, has multiple health benefits. According to Green Med Info, not only can good fats prolong your life and reduce the risk of heart attack, they can prevent mental health issues in the future.
Typically, saturated fat is thought to be on the bad side; believed to cause high cholesterol, which can lead to heart disease and strokes, most health professionals have been warning humans away from saturated fat for many years. However, recent findings have discovered that the panic has been for nothing. Kwidmed tells us how over 80 studies were looked at in relation to saturated fat consumption and it was found that those who consumed saturated fat were no more likely to develop heart disease than those who didn’t. Saturated fats are naturally occurring and are found in foods like cheese, meat and oils.
Saturated fats, however, should not be mixed up with trans fats. These fats, unlike saturated fats, are not naturally occurring and are mainly found in processed and fried foods. Also known as hydrogenated fats, these do cause multiple health issues; the NHS describes how hydrogenated fats narrow the arteries, causing high cholesterol, heart disease and strokes – previously believed to be caused by saturated fats. Additionally, the meals these harmful fats are contained in tend to be ready meals which have been processed and contain other harmful substances, such as preservatives, excess sugar and salt. Therefore, keeping away from ready meals is a sensible rule of thumb when considering your diet in general.
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The threat of trans fats on the health of human beings is so severe that, as Fit Day points outs, many countries in Europe including the UK have prohibited its use. Unfortunately, a worldwide ban has not yet been implemented, but the FDA are looking into this. The USA in particular has a nationwide issue with heart disease directly caused by harmful fats in their food and lack of education regarding this.
To conclude, despite previous information painting saturated fat as the villain of the food industry, trans fat is in fact the substance which should be avoided. Contributing to the cause of heart disease, the manmade fat holds no benefits for the human body, unlike Omega-3 and Omega-6, which are vital to the body’s development and health. Saturated fat, on the other hand, isn’t nearly as harmful as once presumed and, in moderation, does not contribute to the development of heart disease.
Julie worked as a nutritionist for close to a decade before taking a step back from her busy work life to raise a family and develop her love of writing. When not working, she enjoys failing to keep up with her ambitious fitness regime and being taken for walks by her Labradors.
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