Are fats healthy? 💪🏼 What actually are they? 🤔 Why are they important? ✨
Fats are an essential macronutrient and have various important functions...
⚡️Supply energy for cells to use or store
⚡️Aid absorption and transport of fat soluble micronutrients eg Vitamin A, D, E and K
⚡️Insulation to keep us warm and protect organs
⚡️Provide essential fatty acids to build and maintain cell membranes
⚡️Help to make certain hormones
⚡️Keep us feeling saitiated after a meal
The fat (or 'lipid') family includes fatty acids, phospholipids and sterols.
There are 4 main types of fatty acid, the length of the fatty acid and the location of the double bond affects its function:
🌰 Polyunsaturated - these are often classified as 'healthy' fats. 'Poly' means more than one double bond.
🥑 (Mono)unsaturated - they are also often classified as 'healthy' fats but only contain one double bond.
🧀 Saturated - have no double bonds so are linear in structure. Eating high amounts of saturated fats has been associated with chronic diseases such as heart disease (1).
🍩 Trans - these are often classified as 'unhealthy' fats. The trans configuration means they act like saturated fats and have been associated with increasing levels of 'bad' LDL cholesterol and decreasing levels of 'good' HDL cholesterol (2), they have also been linked to heart disease.
Any Qs, please feel free to ask 🤓
1- Hooper, 2015. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD011737
2- Grundy, 2016. DOI: 10.1007/s11883-016-0615-0