Fats are some of the most misunderstood macronutrients we consume, but the truth is that they’re a highly important component of any diet. Understanding them properly is simply a matter of paying attention to distinctions and details.
The process of marketing food products often involves using “fat free” as a way to indicate a “healthier” product, which can contribute to negative connotations. It’s therefore important to change the way you perceive fats altogether. You may have noticed we talk about fats in the plural rather than simply saying “fat”. This is because different fats take many forms and have varying effects on the body. The foods we eat are often fascinating and dynamic, so it’s good to avoid oversimplifying or generalizing as much as possible.
Purpose and Utility
Like any macronutrient, fats provide your body with energy and ways to store it, but their other uses extend beyond this. From circulation and absorption of crucial vitamins throughout the bloodstream to keeping your body insulated, they show up in more important functions than you might think. Perhaps one of the most underrated of these is their importance as a structural element in your organs, nerve fiber, and the membranes of every cell in your body.
Knowing Good From Bad
Putting together an accurate image of fats involves distinguishing between the bad ones and the good ones, as well as knowing where they’re found. There are three central types: saturated, trans, and unsaturated. Saturated fat is solid at room temperature and commonly found in butter or meat. Trans fat, also solid, has been hydrogenated to last longer for industrial purposes, showing up in processed foods like chips and cookies. It’s best to consume these two in moderation.
Unsaturated fats, meanwhile, are liquid at room temperature and often found in the form of oils from plant life like sesame and avocados. These are a bit more preferable, as they help to improve cholesterol levels made worse by saturated and trans fats. Of course, the needs and metabolism of each body will vary, but using this as a general guideline is the first step toward a clearer understanding of such an important and varied nutrient!
We at Vitality Fitness believe that a positive and supportive bootcamp community is the key to success in reaching fitness goals. Give us a call at (587) 777-3378 today and we’ll get you feeling as healthy and confident as ever!