Nutritional Ingredients

What are fats and are fats harmful or beneficial?

The word fat always carries a lot of bad impressions of overall health, Fat is often accused of causing many chronic diseases such as pressure and type II diabetes.

But the reality is very different from those accusations.

The importance of fats

In fact, the body needs some fat, as it is a major source of energy, They also help absorb certain vitamins and minerals.

Furthermore there is an urgent need for fat to build cell membranes, and the vital outer part of each cell, and the envelopes surrounding the nerves.

Fat is also essential for blood clotting, muscle movement, and infections


Fat components

All fats have a similar chemical structure, It is a chain of carbon atoms bonded to hydrogen atoms.

What makes one lipid different is the length and shape of the carbon chain and the number of hydrogen atoms attached to carbon atoms.

The differences in structure between the different forms of fat are slight, But they are translated into fundamental differences in form and function.


Types of fats

Fats have two types, healthy fats and unhealthy fats, and the first type includes monounsaturated fats and triglycerides.

As for unhealthy fats, They are unsaturated fats, Saturated fats are in an intermediate place in between.


Bad fats

The worst type of dietary fat is the type known as trans fat, It is a by-product of a process called hydrogenation that is used to convert healthy oils into solids.

Trans fats have no known health benefits and no safe level of consumption; therefore, They are officially banned in the United States.

In the early twentieth century, Trans fats have been used in the food industry, Food makers have also learned new ways to use partially hydrogenated vegetable oils .

Trans fats appear in everything from cakes and commercial desserts to fast food fries.


Negative effects of trans fats

Eating foods high in trans fats increases the amount of LDL cholesterol in the bloodstream and reduces the amount of HDL cholesterol.

Trans fats create a lot of inflammation that eventually leads to heart disease, stroke, diabetes and other chronic diseases.


Good fats

Good fats come mainly from vegetables, nuts, seeds and fish. They are monounsaturated or triglycerides.

Good fats differ from saturated fats by having fewer hydrogen atoms bonded to carbon chains.

There are two main categories of good fats: Monounsaturated and trans triglycerides.

Monounsaturated fats consist of two hydrogen atoms less than regular (bad) saturated fats This structure keeps monounsaturated fats at room temperature.

The main sources of these fats are olive oil, peanut oil, canola oil, avocado and most nuts. In addition to sunflower oil.


Recommended amount of monounsaturated fats

Although there is no recommended daily amount of monounsaturated fats, Recommends
Harvard Medical School
, using them as much as possible with polyunsaturated fats to replace saturated and trans fats (the bad type of fat).


Unsaturated triglycerides

are the essential fat of the body, This means that they are fats that are required for normal body functions but cannot be made by your body, so you should get them from food.

Unsaturated triglycerides are used to build cell membranes and cover nerves, They are essential for blood clotting, muscle movement, and inflammation.


What happens if the body is deprived of trans fats?

Depriving the body of trans fats or good fats (mono or triglycerides) leads to many negative effects, Among them; a high risk of heart disease, According to For Healthy Food WebsiteSeveral studies have confirmed that men who eat fish at least once a week are less likely to die from coronary heart disease than those who don’t eat, and because essential trans fats reduce blood pressure, depriving the body of these fats leads to a greater risk of heart disease than if consumed regularly.

One of the effects of unsaturated fat deficiency is also that diabetics suffer from coronary heart disease.

and an increased risk of type II diabetes, In addition to reduced cognitive function

Some long-term human studies have shown that regular omega-3 fatty acid intake can reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

Trans fat deprivation can therefore reduce cognitive function in the short term and increase the likelihood of serious long-term cognitive impairment.

Components of triglycerides

Trans triglycerides have one or more double bonds in the carbon chain.

There are two main types of polyunsaturated fats; the first is omega-3 fatty acids, The second is omega-6 fatty acids, Both types offer health benefits.

The main benefit of these fats is to reduce LDL cholesterol and improve cholesterol level.

Good sources of omega-3 fatty acids include fatty fish such as salmon , mackerel, sardines, flaxseed, walnuts, canola oil, and undigested soybean oil.

These acids help treat heart disease and stroke. In addition to lowering blood pressure, And increase good HDL cholesterol levels.

Omega-6 fatty acids help protect against heart disease.

It can be obtained from vegetable oils such as safflower, soybean, sunflower, walnut and corn oil.

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Saturated fats

The word “saturated” here refers to the number of hydrogen atoms surrounding each carbon atom

The carbon chain has as many hydrogen atoms as possible, This means that they are saturated with hydrogen.


Is saturated fat bad?

A diet high in saturated fat can increase total cholesterol, But it may also lead to an increase in LDL cholesterol in the body.

This can eventually lead to clogged arteries in the heart and elsewhere in the body.

For this reason, Most nutritionists recommend restricting saturated fats to less than 10% of calories per day.

A host of reports have also linked saturated fat to heart disease.

Studies have urged replacing saturated fats with monounsaturated or trans triglycerides such as vegetable oils or high-fiber carbohydrates.

This is your best bet to reduce the risk of heart disease.


Common Sources of Fat

Common sources of saturated fat are red meat, whole milk and other dairy products, cheese and coconut oil.


Body fat

The previous fats we talked about, It is a fat that a person obtains from the food he eats, But another type of fat is body fat itself.

The types of body fat are divided into: brown fat, and white ones, According to Dr. Donald Hansro on the site Mayo Clinic Medical Group.

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Brown fat

As for brown fats, Also called brown adipose tissue, It is a special type of body fat that is triggered, or activated, When you feel cold.

Brown fat produces heat to help maintain body temperature in cold conditions.

Brown fat contains more mitochondria than white fat.

These mitochondria act as “engines” in brown fat that burn calories to produce heat.


White fat

It is visceral fat in the body, Which are stored in the buttocks, flanks, abdomen, liver and kidneys.

white fat, harmful to the body, It is a fat that is stored through excess calories.


The effect of increased white fat on children

Nancy Brown sees, President of the American Heart Association, According to American Heart website

: “The increase in obesity and white fat in children significantly affects children’s physical activity and therefore academic performance, as well as concentration in the classroom.

This prompted the US Congress to issue a number of legislations that emphasize the need for children to eat healthy food, Away from theFatty fatty foods.


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