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Benefits of Fats
Benefits of Fats
What are fats? What are the benefits of fats. What are saturated and unsaturated fats? And what is polyunsaturated fat?
Fats are compounds that are either solid or liquid at room temperature and they are insoluble in water. They are also widely referred to as oils or lipids. The difference is oil is usually in liquid form while fat is in solid form. Lipids are either solid or liquid.
Humans get the fats they need from animals and plants. They are either in monounsaturated, saturated and polyunsaturated forms. Some examples of foods that contain fats are butter, ghee, nuts, meat, fish, sesame, coconut, olive and sunflower.
The Health Benefits of Fats
- Fat is a reserve supply to produce fuel for the body in the absence of glucose. If unused or in excess they are stored in the body. Excess fats are the major component of the flab at the waistline and other parts of the body.
- When the need arises, fats are broken down in the pancreas and released as glycerol and free fatty acids.
- Fats are necessary to maintain body temperature.
- They function as a protector to prevent damage to delicate and vital internal organ.
- They are also required to produce some steroids and hormones to control proper growth and maintenance of tissues in the body.
- Humans need fat in their diet to maintain healthy skin and hair.
- The body needs essential fatty acids but it can't be manufactured in the body. So it is necessary to include foods that contain like cold water fish. EFAs help in brain development and improve concentration. And it helps in weight control. A lack of essential fatty acids in the diet affects mood swings and behavior and can lead to depression.
- Taking the right amount of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats can help reduce blood cholesterol and fight against heart disease.
Though there are quite a number of benefits of fats, consuming saturated fats more than the dietary requirement is very unhealthy. It contributes to diseases and illness such as atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease. Examples of foods that contain high proportion of saturated fat cream, cheese, tallow, lard, meat, coconut oil, and some prepared fast foods.
Unsaturated or also called trans fat which are either polyunsaturated or monounsaturated fats are healthier. Examples are olive oil and canola oil.