Know Your Fats - Monounsaturated, Polyunsaturated & Saturated

Contrary to popular belief, fats are an essential part of the diet. However, there are several types of fats, and each has a unique influence on the body. Some fats are helpful in weight loss, while others are linked with heart diseases. Regardless of what fitness regime you follow, it's crucial to know your fats; otherwise, your diet plan will not be fruitful. 

Most people eliminate fat from their diet, believing it's the number one cause of obesity. However, the real culprit behind unhealthy weight gain is sugar. Insulin plays a vital role in our diet, and experts advise against excessive consumption of sugar. Since sugar also contains fats, it becomes relevant to learn about the distinct types of fats and figure out which ones are good for steady weight loss. 

This blog post shared everything you need to know about fats and explained them in detail. So keep reading to learn more. 

Different Types of fats 

Not all fats are created equally. In fact, some fats can promote a healthy diet. Fats are mainly divided into two categories: Good fats and bad fats. 

Good fats (Unsaturated fats)

When food manufacturers reduce fats from their products, they typically replace them with carbohydrates. This results in significant weight gain and might lead to various diseases. Understanding the types of fats promotes an excellent diet and helps monitor what you eat. Here are the two different types of good fats that are beneficial for the body. 

  • Monosaturated fats
  • Polyunsaturated fats

What are Monosaturated Fats? 

Each category of fats has a unique chemical structure that entails its beneficial or adverse properties on the body. Monosaturated fats are the healthy types of fats found in olive oils, nuts, and avocado. 

This type of fat not only prevents weight gain but also helps in shedding some extra pounds. Consuming fat for weight loss doesn't make you feel tired or sleepy because the stomach is full and adequate energy levels are produced in the body. 

What are Polysaturated Fats? 

Polyunsaturated fats are a type of good fats also known as "essential fats." This type of fat is necessary for the body to consume through food because it cannot be produced naturally. Additionally, polyunsaturated fats also reduce the risk of heart diseases and help in weight loss. The main chemical component of polyunsaturated fats is omega 3 fatty acids, found in the below-mentioned foods.

  • Salmon
  • Herring
  • Sardines
  • Trout
  • Walnuts
  • Flaxseed
  • Chia Seeds
  • Canola Oil
Burger Fries

Bad fats (Saturated fats)

Bad fats are essentially found in meat and other products. Unlike unsaturated fats, bad fats (saturated fats) are harmful to the body as their excessive consumption can lead to obesity. 

However, complete elimination of saturated fats from the diet is not recommended. Instead, it's best to consume bad fats sparingly to avoid the risk of heart diseases or weight gain. Below is a list of food that contains bad fats. Try consuming these in a moderate amount to reduce your chances of gaining weight. 

  • fatty cuts of beef, pork, and lamb
  • dark chicken meat and poultry skin
  • high-fat dairy foods (whole milk, butter, cheese, sour cream, ice cream)
  • tropical oils (coconut oil, palm oil, cocoa butter)
  • lard

2015 review of 15 randomized controlled trials showed that replacing saturated fats with polyunsaturated fats resulted in a lower risk of heart diseases. 

Trans Fats 

One of the worst types of fats you can put in your body is a trans fatty acid. This type of fat is found in partially hydrogenated vegetable oil. Like saturated fat, trans fat can increase bad cholesterol levels and suppress good cholesterol. Moreover, doctors have also linked trans fat to causing inflammation in the body. 

The result of this inflammation is heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. Avoiding trans fat is not only good for weight loss, but it also promotes healthy living. It's better to avoid consuming trans fat if you want to achieve an appealing physique or live free from various diseases. Here is a list of items that contain high traces of trans fats. 

  • fried foods (French fries, doughnuts, deep-fried fast foods)
  • margarine (stick and tub)
  • vegetable shortening
  • baked goods (cookies, cakes, pastries)
  • processed snack foods (crackers, microwave popcorn)

Most people believe that margarine is a good source of fats; however, there are a few factors to keep in mind. For instance, margarine made with hydrogenated oils contains trans fat, which is extremely harmful to your body. Checking the label for "non-hydrogenated fats" is crucial to keep your body healthy and active. 

The Bottom Line 

Love them or hate them, fats play an important role in your diet and avoiding them is impossible. Knowing or not knowing we are consuming fats in a variety of ways. Therefore, it is best to reduce saturated fat consumption, avoid trans fat, and increase consumption of unsaturated fats. 

If you try to keep yourself away from consuming any amounts of fat, your body will eventually rebel, and your fat consumption will increase more than before. The best way to revolutionize your diet is by understanding the different types of fats, making a diet chart, and slowly removing unhealthy fats from your food.