April 21, 2009

Fat Math

Do you know the difference between fats, saturated fats, poly & mono-unsaturated fats? And do you know how they are all connected?
The general term of "fats" is broken into 2 smaller categories: saturated and unsaturated fats.
Saturated fats are those fats that are very bad for you. They clog arteries, cause heart attacks, and raise cholesterol (LDL) and blood pressure levels. These are usually found in "heavy" foods, like cookies, cake, chocolate, fried foods, and fast foods (like cheeseburgers and french fries).
Unsaturated fats are those fats that are very good for you. They are broken into 2 smaller categories called Poly-unsaturated fats and Mono-unsaturated fats. These good fats raise your "good" cholesterol levels (HDL), lower your blood pressure, clean out your arteries, and keep your heart in good condition. These are found primarily in nuts (almonds & walnuts), sunflower seeds, peanut butter, vegetable & olive oils, and lean meats.
How to read food labels:
Most food labels simply have a "Fat" label, with an amount (say 10 grams), then a sub-heading with the "Saturated fat" heading. (say 5 grams). So the label is telling you that that product has 5 grams of saturated fat (the bad kind). But what about the other 5 grams?
Well, those are your "good" fats.
Take Total Fat, and subtract Saturated Fat amount. The resulting number is the amount of Un-saturated fats in that food.
Now you can do "fat math!" It pays to be educated about what you're eating and we all sure need help to decipher those food labels!
Happy wellness eating!

No comments:

Post a Comment