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Many of us have heard the term saturated fats, but we may not understand exactly what saturated fats are, or how they work exactly.
The first thing that you should know is that saturated and unsaturated fats are found in quite a few different foods and that they are completely different.
Since we know that too much saturated fat can raise your cholesterol and put you at risk for heart problems, the question then becomes how much saturated fat is safe to eat? The fact is, it is impossible to avoid having fat in our diet, but most people eat far too much fat, and when they do it is normally the saturated fats cause spikes in cholesterol and heart problems later in life. Though there are more than eight, I’ve highlighted 8 reasons eating more saturated fats (and the foods they’re found in) can help improve your health. It is thought, since PUFAs are more prone to lipid peroxidation, or being attacked by free radicals, that PUFAs actually lead to the development of atherosclerosis. About 20% of the population has non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.[2] NAFLD, as the name suggests, is the development of excessive fat in the liver. There’s growing debate as to whether cholesterol levels themselves should be viewed as significant indicators of heart disease risk.
Testosterone plays an important role for men and women in the maintenance or development of lean body mass.
When you review the research on nutrition and heart disease, it’s quite difficult to find saturated fat as the villain in the development of heart disease, or really any other chronic condition. The total body of evidence suggests that attention should be shifted from the harmful effects of dietary SAFA per se, to the prevention of the accumulation of SAFA in body lipids. About Tom NikkolaTom Nikkola has dedicated his entire career to the health and fitness industry and has far-reaching experience in supplementation, nutrition, metabolism and weight management. Add this blog to your feeds or put your e-mail in the box below and hit GO to subscribe by e-mail. No complicated formulas or protein supplements are needed for you to get sufficient protein for growth, even if you are a serious athlete.
I am a chemist and I want to know the difference between the chemical composition of animal protein and chemical composition of plant protein. Eating natural protein is always the best but if you are in a hurry protein shakes and supplements are a good alternative. Negative connotations around certain foods grow as you go higher up the pyramid, and this is most true for fats. When discussing the topic of fats, it’s always important to remember that too much of something can never be good for you. Contrary to what many believe, fat is an essential nutrient with many important functions in the body, like the transportation and use of vitamins A, D, E, and K.
While we have been told to avoid saturated fats, most of us don’t know why and moreover, whether unsaturated fats should be avoided as well. The exact amount depends upon the calories that you eat, but most experts agree that less than 10% of your calories should come from saturated fats. That includes the ten percent from saturated fats previously discussed, so you can make up the difference with unsaturated fats, above the saturated fats that you eat, to a maximum of thirty percent. Try to stick to the recommended amounts of saturated and unsaturated fats and you will be thankful for it later on, as well as being on your way to creating healthy eating habits that will do much more than keep cholesterol in line.

Hopefully, with the vast number of review papers being published in respected journals, refuting the “saturated fat is bad” mantra, we’ll eventually get the truth out there about saturated fat as well. Vegetable oils tend to be high in omega-6 linoleic acid, a polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA). Some suggest fructose consumption plays a major role in this disease, but it’s also possible that the population’s major reliance on vegetable oils can play a role.
Sauteing and frying with canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil and many other vegetable oils are high in omega-6 fats.
I remember in the days when I saw a chicken breast as healthier than chicken thighs, I had to add a bunch of low-fat, sugary junk to the chicken breast to make it taste good. However, with what’s known today, the ratio of total cholesterol to HDL-C is considered the most telling measure of risk.
Research has shown a diet where saturated fats are replaced with unsaturated fats lowers the production of sex hormones.[5] It’s bad enough that 25% of men over 30 have low testosterone levels. This shift would emphasize the importance of reducing dietary CHO, especially CHO with a high glycemic index, rather than reducing dietary SAFA. Even worse, those who avoid saturated fats run the risk of missing out on other key nutrients and health benefits. It is interesting to note that foods such as peas, green vegetables, and beans have lots of protein—even more protein per calorie than meat. Exercise drives an increased hunger, and as you consume more calories to meet the demands of exercise, you will naturally get the extra protein you need. Joel Fuhrman, offering commentary & analysis on cancer, cardiovascular disease, healthy and unhealthy foods, depression, healthy parenting, obesity and other health-related issues. On the bottom two (foods to eat most) are breads, rice, pastas, fruit and vegetables followed higher up by meat and dairy products with the very top, the smallest part of the pyramid, containing fats, oils and sweets.
Minnie Strickland, a Cook Island general practitioner from the Mt Wellington Accident and Family Clinic in Auckland, says we need to substitute good fats for bad fats, avoiding trans fats in particular.
Fats are an important source of energy and also supply the body with omega-3 and omega-6, known as essential fatty acids. Here is some information on the differences between saturated fats and unsaturated fats and how you should use them. For instance, on a 2000 calorie per day diet, 200 of your calories should be coming from products that have saturated fat. That means, for a 2000 calorie per day diet, you should be getting 600 calories or less from fats, and 200 or less or those should be from saturated fats.
We’ve wrongfully vilified this important nutrient for so long, people speak of saturated fat as though they’re certain it’s unhealthy. You can help by getting a better understanding of how this nutrient impacts your health, or even sharing the points below with your friends and family. Though some research has shown that replacing saturated fat in the diet lowers LDL cholesterol, the effect of the lower LDL cholesterol hasn’t been shown to lower heart disease risk.
Researchers from the University of Arkansas found that replacing PUFAs with medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) helped reverse the development of NAFLD. The yolk has about ten times as much calcium as the white, twenty times the folate, and is a good source of vitamin A and omega-3s, whereas the white has none. It’s bad enough to eat them, based on the fact they seem to raise heart disease risk alone.

Most people find the thighs taste much better, just as whole eggs taste better than egg whites, 85% lean ground beef has more flavor than 90% lean, whole milk is more satisfying than skim milk, etc.
When saturated fats replace PUFAs, in some people it may raise total cholesterol, but it mainly does so by raising HDL.
As good as they are to consume, many people also benefit from using coconut oil on their skin in place of other creams and lotions.
It’s even worse that a low-fat diet, often recommended as healthy, actually reduces the body’s ability to secrete hormones the support health and longevity. That said, if your diet still contains a lot of excessive sugar and other starches, please don’t use this as a license to freely eat more high-fat foods.
But what is generally considered is that foods that are rich in plant protein are generally the foods that are richest in nutrients and phytochemicals.
Both kinds of fat are bad for us and it’s perhaps this type of fat that would have been more appropriate at the top of the diet pyramid. If you were to figure it out in grams, you can assume 1 gram of fat for each 10 calories, so on a 2000 calorie per day diet, around 20 grams should be your maximum. In fact, research shows that replacing saturated fats with omega-6 fats increases the risk of heart disease. Cheese is rich in riboflavin, calcium, phosphorus, selenium, and depending on the type of cheese, several other nutrients.
However, cooking with them causes quick oxidation of the fats, creating a lot of free radicals in the food you eat. Of course, this point is based a little more on opinion than scientific research, but I’ve found most people would agree. The combination of a high-sugar and high-fat diet can be really bad news for your cardiovascular health because of the elevated insulin released from the carbohydrates. He is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, Certified Sports Nutritionist and Certified Personal Trainer. By eating more of these high-nutrient, low-calorie foods, we get plenty of protein, and our bodies get flooded with protective micronutrients simultaneously. Although, in an ideal world, this type of fat would likely stay off the food pyramid altogether. For example, not adding oil or fat when cooking meat but rather cooking it in its own juices and removing the excess fat prior to serving.
Unsaturated fats are heart healthy and can lower LDL cholesterol and raise HDL cholesterol. Butter and coconut oil, or even bacon grease and lard, are far more stable oils to cook with when needed. If you feel more satisfied from the meal you just ate, you’ll be less likely to snack on junk later in the day. That said, it you just buy fattier cuts of meat, you don’t need to use as much added oils for cooking, except when sauteing or roasting vegetables.

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