Reducing Fat Intake In Daily Diet Essential To Good Health
It is rather a sad indictment on our western society that in the past thirty years the number of people officially classed as obese has risen to over 50% of the population. One of the key reasons for this, apart from our general lack of regular exercise, is the amount of fat consumed on a daily basis in the food we eat. It’s an interesting exercise to look at old newsreel footage from the early to mid 1900s and try to find anyone who could be labelled as fat. It’s almost impossible, but do the same exercise with footage taken over the past thirty or so years and there will be no shortage of candidates.
One excellent source of information that gives precise quantities of fat in foodstuffs is the nutrition panel on most food packaging. Not only does it give the amount of fat per serving, but it also separates it into the good fats and the not so good fats.
The first thing that is important to understand is the differences between the fats, and how they affect the body. Saturated fats are found predominately in butter, dairy products, fatty meats, fried take-away food and many of our processed foods. A diet high in saturated fats can increased LDL or “bad” cholesterol in the blood which is a major factor in coronary heart disease. This can be avoided by moderating the intake of total fat and reducing the intake of saturated fat.
Monounsaturated fats are actually helpful to have in the diet as they held lower blood cholesterol. They are found in olive, canola and macadamia oils, nuts, avocados and monounsaturated margarine. Not to be confused with the one just mentioned, polyunsaturated fats are essential to good health as they provide the omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids essential to the proper functioning of the brain. Sunflower, sesame, soy and safflower oils are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids, and oily fish such as salmon, sardines, other sea foods as well as canola oil are excellent sources of omega-6 fatty acids.
This is a quick overview of a complex subject, but if consumers remember to look at the nutrition panel on the food products before they place them into plastic bags in Brisbane, they can start taking control of their health by reducing the daily intake of saturated fats. Consciously choosing products with low levels of saturated fat will assist any diet and exercise regime to show reasonably quick results.
There is really no excuse for consumers not knowing this information other than a lack of understanding and interest. The detail has been provided on most packaging for anyone to read and it then becomes the responsibility of the individual to decide which product to choose.