We have fats as the main enemy of all slimming diets and as something we should avoid if we want to have a healthy diet. But as in all cases, it is not good to generalize. Then we show you what fats you can consume without remorse of conscience.
The fat, neither aesthetic nor health, is well seen. It is related to excess weight and the typical Michelin. However, it plays an important role in our body. And it is that it not only serves to protect the organs, but also fulfills multiple regulatory, metabolic and structural functions. In addition, it provides palatability to the food bolus and favors the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins. It is recommended that 30% of the energy consumed comes from fats , therefore, a diet of 1800 calories should contain 60 g of fat. They are as essential as carbohydrates and proteins, although you have to know which are more beneficial for health. But fat is not all the same, and today we already know that there are some more recommendable than others.
The fats you should moderate
Before the word fat, the first image that comes to mind is the sausages (sausage, sausage …), bacon, fatty meats, cheeses, butter, cream, etc. All of them are foods rich in saturated fats. But there are others that also contain appreciable amounts of this type of fat and in which we do not usually think. They are cocoa butter, coconut and palm oils, as well as trans fats. The latter are found naturally in meat and milk from ruminants, but are also produced through industrial processes, to obtain semisolid and solid textures and thus provide a certain consistency to the food. These fats are usually present in a variety of processed foods, many of them pastries, cookies and precooked, among others. Numerous studies have shown the association between the consumption of saturated and trans fats, and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. And although saturated fats also have their purpose in our body, the different organisms and experts advise to moderate their consumption.
The fats you should take
We also have the possibility of enriching the diet with fats considered healthier , especially at the level of cardiovascular health. Foods rich in this type of fat are:
- Olive oil. It is one of the major sources of oleic acid (monounsaturated fatty acid) and is the main fat in the Mediterranean diet for cooking, dressing, or even preserving food. According to the PREDIMED study (prevention with a Mediterranean diet), a diet enriched with virgin olive oil or nuts reduces the incidence of cardiovascular events by 30% after about five years of intervention in people at high cardiovascular risk. In addition, due to its particular composition in fatty acids and in antioxidants it is more resistant to auto-oxidation and rancidity than other vegetable oils. Contains tocopherols, being alpha-tocopherol the most active form of vitamin E, which has antioxidant action and provides stability to oil. In the market we find different types of oils, but it is the “virgin” and “extra virgin” oils that conserve the most micro-nutrients (vitamins, phytosterols and polyphenols), since those that have undergone refining processes lose part of these compounds. On the other hand, the effect of olive oil on blood pressure has also been studied, with results that suggest that its consumption, within the framework of a Mediterranean diet, has an inverse relationship with blood pressure figures.
- Blue Fish. Within this group is the salmon, the sardine, the tuna, the horse mackerel, the mackerel, etc. Apart from being a great source of protein, they are of nutritional interest because they provide omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids to our diet. This type of fat is equally beneficial for our cardiovascular health because they inhibit platelet aggregation and help improve the lipid profile, since it lowers LDL (or bad) cholesterol, increases HDL (or good) and reduces triglycerides. Blue fish is especially juicy, and should be introduced into the diet at least one to three times a week.
- Nuts. Its habitual consumption and in moderate amounts has also been associated with greater cardiovascular health. It treats of foods with a valued fat content not only by the quantity but also by the quality. They contain more than 50% fat, of which, most is unsaturated. In general, they are an important source of omega-6 fatty acids, although in nuts, omega-3s stand out. The proportion is variable depending on the type of nut. It is essential fatty acids, which our body can not synthesize and which we must obtain through the diet. On the other hand, nuts do not only stand out as a source of beneficial fats, but also by providing a certain amount of protein to the diet, fiber, as well as a great variety of minerals and vitamins. For this varied nutritional composition, it is recommended to include a small portion of nuts in the daily diet. They can be included in the bowl of breakfast cereals, in yogurts, in salads or other dishes for lunch or dinner.
- It has been part of our diet for a few years now, and has been very well received for its neutral taste and creaminess. It stands out for its fat content (14%), which is just the component that provides lubricity. Like the olive, the majority fat is monounsaturated (oleic acid), and is part of the group of foods favorable for cardiovascular health. In the kitchen, the avocado is used more as a vegetable than as a fruit, since it is usually used to make guacamole, a great variety of salads or toast. Additionally it is a good source of folic acid, vitamin E and carotenoids, the latter, antioxidant substances that give this fruit great nutritional value.
It is convenient to contemplate these foods in our diet, although they should be included within the framework of a balanced diet and in quantities appropriate to our needs.