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All About Healthy Fats

What they are, why you need them, and 3 recipes that are packed with ’em!

Source: — Jack Sparrow

Healthy fats are essential to a balanced diet, yet many people still fear them. But, contrary to popular belief, consuming healthy fats can benefit your body in numerous ways, from reducing inflammation to promoting heart health. Keep reading to get the 411 on healthy fats, why you need them, and three delicious recipes packed with these beneficial fats.

What They Are

There are several different types of fat found in food. The term “healthy fats,” also known as unsaturated fats, refers to those that offer nutritional value and sustenance to the human body. These fats can (and should) be consumed in significant quantities without harming the body. There are two different types of unsaturated fats–monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. According to UCLA Health, these fats are known to support gut health, regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels, provide essential vitamins and minerals, and promote organ functionality.

Monounsaturated Fats:

  • Olive, canola, peanut, and sesame oils
  • Avocados
  • Olives
  • Nuts (almonds, peanuts, macadamia, hazelnuts, pecans, cashews)

Polyunsaturated Fats:

  • Sunflower, sesame, and pumpkin seeds
  • Flaxseed
  • Walnuts
  • Fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel, herring, trout, sardines) and fish oil
  • Soybean and safflower oil
  • Soymilk
  • Tofu

“Bad fats” are artificial in nature, also known as trans fats. These fats, even when consumed in small quantities, can prove harmful to the human body. According to the American Heart Association, trans fat can increase cholesterol and the risk of heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. Trans fats are often in fried foods, frozen dinners, and microwaveable food items.

Saturated fats are a more neutral type of fat. These fats, when coming from organic and unprocessed sources–such as red meat, chicken, whole-fat dairy products, and butter–are an excellent addition to one’s diet. However, saturated fats are in many processed foods and sugary items–such as chips, candy, and pastries–and those are the saturated fats that you should steer clear of.

Why You Need Them

According to UCLAHealth, healthy fats are vastly beneficial to our health and the overall functionality of our bodies, as they are proven to decrease the risk of developing heart disease, improve blood cholesterol levels, help with blood sugar control and reduce inflammation, and improve gut health

Healthy fat foods are typically very high in vitamins and minerals, and they also boast the presence of fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6, all known to improve skin, hair, and bone health. 

3 Recipes You’ll LOVE

Whether you’re a foodie or a health enthusiast, get ready to discover some delectable dishes that are delicious and nourishing for your body.

1. Upgraded Avocado Toast

Kick your usual avocado toast to the curb and check out this new and improved recipe from DaensKitchen instead! Made with a yummy avocado and cream cheese spread, this toast will give you the healthy fat and nutrients you need to start your day!

2. Smokey-Ranch Salmon Bites

Take your salmon to the next level with this smokey-ranch salmon bites recipe! Perfect for a lunchtime snack, MandaJessPanda gives you another reason to whip out your air-fryer!

3. Zucchini Pancakes

Breakfast for dinner? Sign us up! Here, KaleMeMaybe shows how to make super tasty zucchini pancakes topped with a citrus, yogurt spread, and raw salmon. Isn’t it mouthwatering?!

How do you incorporate more fat into your diet? Let us know in the comments down below!

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