Fat is one of the macro nutrients necessary for survival. Fat is an essential nutrient necessary for normal body function. It supplies energy, is necessary for absorption of fat soluble vitamins, keeps our bodies warm, protects our organs, helps make hormones and forms the structure of cell membranes. It is imperative you include healthy fats in your diet. The low fat/no fat craze is a thing of the past.
One type of fat in particular, essential fatty acids, are very important to include in your diet. These fats are considered “essential” meaning our body can’t produce them so it must obtain them from food. Fatty acids are necessary for numerous normal body functions, such as controlling blood clotting and building cell membranes in the brain. Ideally, we would eat a balance of Omega-3 and Omega-6’s in our diet. Unfortunately most of us consume far more omega 6’s than threes. Both are necessary for optimal health. Omega 6’s keep the brain healthy, supports skin and hair growth, are important for bone health, help regulate the metabolism, and support the reproductive system. Omega-3 fatty acids are also associated with many health benefits, including protection against heart disease and possibly stroke. Omega-3’s and Omega-6 fatty acids can be found in a variety of foods. Foods high in Omega-3 include fatty fish like salmon or tuna, grass fed beef, chia seeds, nuts (especially walnuts), flax seeds, flaxseed oil, and leafy vegetables. Most people consume plenty of Omega-6 without trying by eating vegetable oils such as corn oil, safflower oil, soybean oil, as well as poultry and eggs. Focus on adding more Omega-3 sources to your diet to balance your ratio of Omega-3 to Omega- 6 fats.
Given the importance of these two essential nutrients to your health, don’t shy away from these healthy fats in your diet.
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