What are “GOOD” and “BAD” Fats? – Buffalo, NY

“How much FAT is in it?”

It seems to be one of the most popular questions I hear when someone is talking about the nutritional value of food.  However I believe that question should be followed by another, that being “What type of fat is in it?” I feel like the popular opinion nowadays is to stay away from fats, but the truth healthy fats should be consumed in your diet on a regular basis.  Below is a brief description of both the benefits and risks for each type.

Monounsaturated:

  • Lower Total and bad cholesterol (LDL) levels
  • Increase good cholesterol (HDL) levels
  • Found in olive oil, canola oil, sunflower oil, peanut oil, sesame oil, avocados, olives, nuts, and nut butters

Polyunsaturated:

  • Lower triglycerides and reduce inflammation
  • Found in soybean oil, corn oil, safflower oil, walnuts, flaxseeds, soymilk, salmon, tuna, mackerel, herring, trout, sardines, and tofu

Saturated

  • Raise total bad cholesterol (LDL)
  • Found in beef, lamb, pork, milk, cream, butter, cheese, ice cream, palm oil, coconut oil, and lard

Trans Fats

  • Raise bad cholesterol (LDL) and lower good cholesterol (HDL)
  • Found in baked goods, packaged snack foods, stick margarine, vegetable shortening, fried foods, and candy bars.

Research by David Villanueva, HFI

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