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What is fat?

Fat is an important macronutrient that is essential for some bodily functions and also provides energy. It is a vital component of the cells, fatty…

Fat is an important macronutrient that is essential for some bodily functions and also provides energy. It is a vital component of the cells, fatty acids are building materials for hormones and play a decisive role in the utilization of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K). “What applies to all fats is that, in contrast to carbohydrates and protein, they have a higher calorie density.”

What are fatty acids?

Fatty acids are building materials for hormones and play a decisive role in the utilization of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K).

For all fats, however, in contrast to carbohydrates and protein, they have a higher calorie density. 1g of fat has 9.3kcal in contrast to 1g of carbohydrates with 4.1kcal and 1g of protein with 4.1kcal. So fatty foods can make you eat too many calories faster, as they have a higher calorie density. Especially when foods have been heavily processed, care should be taken not to overconsume them in an uncontrolled manner.

What are the Types of Fatty Acids?

Fatty acids are divided into three main groups saturated, unsaturated and Trans fats.

Saturated Fatty Acids:

Saturated fattyacids are mainly found in animal foods, i.e. some dairy products or meat and sausage products. It is often said that all saturated fat can be problematic for you. To generalize this so simply is very wrong. There are different types of saturated fats and they have different effects on your body. Anyone who has a micronutrient-rich diet and does sport does not need to be afraid of saturated fattyacids within the scope of their calorie balance.

Unsaturated Fatty Acids:

Unsaturated fats are packed loose, they occur to be in liquid state at room temperature.

There are two main types of unsaturated acids:

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Monounsaturated FattyAcids – are neutral for our physical health, so they are not problematic for you. Like all other fats, they serve as an energy source. They can be found in olive oil, for example, and are an unproblematic source of calories as part of a balanced diet.

Polyunsaturated/Essential Fatty Acids – Your body cannot produce some fattyacids itself, so it relies on them being supplied from outside. These essential fattyacids belong to the group of polyunsaturated fatty acids. It would be Omega 3 and Omega 6. Omega 3 is easiest to cover with fatty fish and some vegetable oils, Omega 6 can be found in nuts and kernels.

You can attain enough omega 6 through your daily diet. In general, in industrialized nations today, a ratio of 20: 1 (omega-6: omega-3) in the population is assumed, the ratio should ideally be between 1: 1 to 5: 1. For many, this means supplementing with Omega 3 in order to prevent an imbalance between the two.

Trans Fats

The only exception is the so-called Trans fats, which are most common in industrially hydrogenated fats. They should be avoided, so their consumption should be strictly limited. Majorly these are frying fats and products that were fried in them.

Summary

Despite our separate breakdown, you should be aware that almost all of these fatty acids that occur together are in different proportions in the corresponding foods. For example both milk and meat products contain both saturated and unsaturated fatty acids. In order to control your consumption of the various fats, have a look at the nutrition label of the particular product.

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