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Unsaturated Fats: Types, Health Benefits and Sources

Unsaturated fats are a type of fat that has at least one double bond in the fatty acid carbon chain. Depending on the number of double bonds between carbon atoms in the molecule of a fatty acid, they are classified into mono- and polyunsaturated fats. The primary sources of unsaturated fat are plant and nut oils. Unsaturated fats do not raise levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol, but they often tend to increase levels of “good” […]

Saturated Fats: Health Effects, Sources and Reducing Intake

Saturated fat is a type of fat in which all bonds in the fatty acid carbon chain are single bonds and, therefore, all carbons are saturated with hydrogen. This type of fat comes from animal products and certain vegetables and it is the chief dietary source of high levels of “bad” cholesterol (LDL cholesterol). As a result, saturated fat happens to be a major cause of coronary heart disease. Saturated fats are solid at room […]

Trans Fats: Health Risks, Sources and How to Avoid Them

Trans fat is a form of unsaturated fat that has been hydrogenated in order to make it more saturated. As a result, trans fat is more solid and stable at room temperature and less susceptible to spoilage than original unsaturated fat. Fats and oils are made up of glycerol (three-carbon sugar alcohol that forms the backbone of fatty acids) and fatty acids (long molecular chains of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen). They are stored in the […]

Health Effects of Different Types of Dietary Fats

Fat is one of three types of nutrients (along with protein and carbohydrates) that supply calories to the body. Oils are liquid fats and the two terms may be used interchangeably. In addition to being a major source of energy, fat provides numerous other benefits to the body such as protection and insulation. Fat is also involved in the processes that help regulate heart rate, blood pressure, blood clotting, blood vessel constriction and the functions […]

Good and Bad Oils for Salad Dressings

Misrepresentations and resulting confusion about the health effects of fats led some dieticians and nutritionists to advise against salad dressings. They suggested that salads should be dressed with plain lemon juice, thereby avoiding the use of any oils or fats. But, a salad with only lemon juice is not terribly tasty. As a result, some people stopped eating nutritious salads. In fact, we should better avoid most commercial salad dressings as they are made with […]

Foods that May Promote Cancer

Numerous foods and their components are suspected of being implicated in the development of cancer. These include naturally occurring substances as well as artificial additives. Food preservation methods and cooking techniques may also influence the food’s potential for promoting cancer. In addition, cancer-causing agents, which are commonly found in pesticides and packaging can sometimes get into our bodies through the food we eat. As research continues, a number of foods initially denounced as cancer-causing have […]

Fat, Cholesterol and Heart Disease

Heart disease is in the US, as in most westernized countries, the nation’s leading cause of death, killing one in every three Americans. Over seven million Americans suffer from angina pectoris and its severe, recurring pain caused by partial blockage of the coronary arteries. One in three men can expect to develop a cardiovascular disease before the age of 60. Several different factors contribute to the risk of developing heart disease. High blood pressure, diabetes […]

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