Good Fats: Omega-3 and Omega 6

You don’t want to eat too much, but fat is not the enemy! There are such things as good fats and bad fats, and we’re here to tell you about two of the best: Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids!

A diet with an appropriate amount of fat comes with a huge amount of health benefits that you won’t find in other food sources.

But Wait, Isn’t Fat Bad For Me?

That depends on the type of fat! There are four types:

Trans Fat

Considered the worst type of fat, this kind increases your risk of heart- and blood vessel-related disease.

Found in: Commercial baked goods, microwave popcorn, frozen pizza, fried foods, non-dairy creamer, and more.

Saturated Fat

Another type of unhealthy fat, it can also lead to heart- and blood vessel-related disease due to it being solid at room temperature.

Found in: Butter, fatty meats, cured meats cheese, cakes, and more.

Monounsaturated Fat

One of the good fats, it can help reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood, leading to a lower risk of heart disease and stroke.

Found in: Olive oil, peanut oil, avocados, almonds, pecans, pumpkin seeds, and more.

Polyunsaturated Fat

The other good fat, this one also comes with the same health benefits, just to a stronger degree!

Found in: Walnuts, flax seeds, fish, canola oil, sunflower oil, corn oil, and more.

Both Omega-3 and Omega-6 are polyunsaturated fat. They are the essential fatty acids that the body needs for brain function and cell growth, but can’t make it on their own! That means you need to get them from the food you eat.

Some benefits include:

Omega-3

  • Reduce triglycerides, which is a type of fat in your blood
  • Reduces the chance of developing an arrhythmia (an irregular heartbeat)
  • Reduces the buildup of cholesterol in your arteries
  • Slightly lower your blood pressure

Omega-6

  • Control blood sugar
  • Reduce risk of diabetes
  • Lower your blood pressure

How Much A Day?

About 25% to 30% of your daily calorie intake can be fat (should not be any higher) and only 10% of that should come from saturated fat in things like red meat, butter, and cheese. So, that leaves around 15% to 20% left for the other fats including Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids.

This means eating more fish, sprinkling flax seeds on your meal, eating some healthier nuts instead of that bag of chips, and so on.

As a final note, most food has a combination of all types of fats. So, if your plan is to avoid the bad fats altogether, you really can’t. However, a small amount of bad fats isn’t the end of the world and as long as you’re making smart choices and maximizing the good fats, you’ll be on your way to a healthier lifestyle!

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