Fats for the body: Know the functions and importance of dietary fats, sources to fulfil the requirements  |  Photo Credit: iStock Images
- Fats are nutrients in the body that are as important as vitamins and minerals
- People often practice absolute refrain from fat consumption under the pretense of it being unhealthy
- A healthy amount of fat is required by the body to stay fit and functional
New Delhi: How many times have you come across people who run away from fat in food? Quite often, right? Just like vitamins and minerals, healthy amounts of fat is also required by the body to keep it functional. According to Vasanti Malik, a research scientist with the Department of Nutrition at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health says, “Your body needs a regular intake of fat. Fat helps give your body energy, protects your organs, supports cell growth, keeps cholesterol and blood pressure under control, and helps your body absorb vital nutrients. When you focus too much on cutting out all fat, you can actually deprive your body of what it needs most.”
Dietary fats – Types and importance
Fats are nutrients in the body that must be consumed in a healthy amount and excessive consumption may lead to a risk of development of health conditions. There are broadly three types of fats, saturated fat, unsaturated fat (further divided into polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats), and trans fat. A cumulation of all the above-mentioned fats makes up for total fat content. Fats are important for the body because:
- They provide the body with energy.
- They keep the body warm.
- They act as a cushion to protect the organs.
- They are essential for supporting cell growth.
- They aid the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins such as A, D, E, and K.
Food sources of healthy fat
Here are some foods that you must include in your diet to fulfil your body’s healthy fat requirements:
- Eggs: Also considered as superfoods, consuming whole eggs can help you fulfil your requirement for fats. Eggs are versatile foods and can be added to the diet easily.
- Cheese: A popular byproduct of milk, cheese is loved by almost everyone. This popular food is a rich source of fat and calcium. However, if you’re looking out for your health, make sure that you stay away from processed cheese as it can have unhealthy additives in it.
- Fatty fish: Various fishes like salmon, sardines, and trout are good sources of healthy fats. They are also a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids and you can include these in your diet for an enriching and delicious meal.
- Avocados: This can make up for a brilliant breakfast ingredient that is both healthy and delicious. Avocados have a creamy texture and are a rich source of healthy fats. You can blend it in a smoothie or mash it to prepare a spread for your toast.
- Nuts: One of the most versatile foods, nuts such as walnuts, peanuts, pistachios, and pecans can be consumed as a part of a meal, as well as a snack. You can add it to your breakfast in your oatmeal, dessert, or salad, or take a handful, roast it, and eat it as a snack. However, before consumption, make sure that you are not allergic to nuts.
Disclaimer: Tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purpose only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or a dietician before starting any fitness programme or making any changes to your diet.