Wow, it’s been a while since I posted a nutrient blog. The last time was on January 25, and that was only a review, which you can find HERE. So, let’s jump right back in, with a short reminder of what this series is about.
This series is designed to break down each essential nutrient to the human body. When we define “ESSENTIAL”, we mean the human body CANNOT make it on it’s own. Therefore, we get it from outside sources of food or supplements or the sun, in the case of Vitamin D.
And that’s where we’ll continue on today, with Unsaturated fats… FIRST…let’s talk briefly about fats, or lipids, before we hit unsaturated fats.
Fats and oils fall into a class of nutrient known as “lipids”. By definition, lipids are:
“relatively water-insoluble, organic molecules consisting mostly of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms. In other words, lipids are hydrophobic (“water fearing”).”
Lipids are typically one of the following
Oils – These substances are liquid at room temperature – such as olive oil.
Fats – These substances are solid at room temperature – like butter.
The major categories of lipids include:
fatty acids – we will be focusing on these types of lipids
fat soluble vitamins – these vitamins will be discussed later on in the series.
Now that we remember the definition of a fat or lipid, what exactly is an unsaturated fat?
REMEMBER, Fatty acids are broken down further into 2 other groups, based on the chemical bonds between the carbon atoms in the chain. These bonds can either be single or double bonds. These bonds affect the properties and characteristics of the fatty acid.:
Saturated Fatty Acid – SFA – have all single bonds between the carbon. Because there are no double bonds in the chain, SFA’s are rigid and inflexible, and completely surrounded or SATURATED with hydrogen. This rigid nature makes them quite dense, and, therefore solid at room temperature.
Unsaturated Fatty Acid – UFA – have one or more double bonds. The existence of double bonds, makes the UFA’s flexible or bendable. It also means there are fewer hydrogen atoms, so the UFA are not surrounded or saturated by hydrogen, therefore, they are UNSATURATED. The flexibility of these acids make them highly unorganized, preventing them from coming together, making them liquid in most cases.
MonoUnsaturated Fatty Acid – MUFA – have one double bond – These fats are liquid at room temperature, but solidify when refrigerated. (2)
PolyUnsaturated Fatty Acid – PUFA – have two or more double bonds – liquid at room temperature and upon refrigeration.
All fats, whether saturated or unsaturated, contain 9 calories per gram. This is more than double that of protein or carbs, which contain 4 calories per gram. Therefore, while healthy sources of fat are essential to human health, they should be consumed in moderation.
What are the health benefits of mono-unsaturated fats (MUFA) and where can they be found? (2)
Oleic Acid is the most common MUFA. It is commonly found in:
olive oil, nuts
Protection from heart disease
Improved insulin sensitivity
Helps with weight loss
Shown to reduce risk of cancer
What are the health benefits of poly-unsaturated fats (PUFA) and where can they be found? (3)
Poly-unsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) include omega-3 fatty acids, which have been scientifically proven to improve health. Due to the complex nature of Omega fats, I will be doing a separate article on Omega-3’s but for now, here are some healthy sources of PUFA and omega-3:
Cold water fish
Reduces blood pressure
THE UGLY TRUTH ABOUT VEGETABLE OILS
You’ll hear many in the field of nutrition, as well as the U.S.A. federal government push the supposed “health benefits” of VEGETABLE OILS. While it’s true that vegetable oils contain HIGH amounts of PUFA’s, they are EXTREMELY unhealthy. Here’s a short video revealing the UGLY TRUTH about vegetable oil…
STOP EATING THESE OILS IMMEDIATELY… (DR. AXE)
In the following video, Dr. Axe talks about the oils you should NEVER consume, and gives you 5 alternatives. The video is on the long side, 16:24. You can either watch it, or I’ve summed it up for you below.
Why avoid them? They are linked to:
WHICH OILS SHOULD YOU AVOID AT ALL COSTS? VEGETABLE OILS! – Including anything labeled vegetable oil, cottonseed oil, canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil
GMO ingredients -HIGHLY TOXIC/DANGEROUS!
They kill off the GOOD bacteria in your gut!!! The fewer of these little critters you have, the weaker your immune system. You’ll also absorb fewer vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients.
Cause kidney/liver problems – clogs your liver (liver stagnation) and liver toxicity. (BTW…the liver is very resilient, and if you actually start exhibiting symptoms of liver disease, it’s “really far gone” as Dr. Axe says below)
exposed to Trans-fats
can cause weight gain (belly fat)
WHICH OILS SHOULD YOU START CONSUMING RIGHT AWAY?
Coconut oil –
Contains MCT’s – medium-chain triglycerides – they are burned as energy
Contains lauric acid, capric acid, and caprylic acid – anti-microbial – kills off bad bacteria and pathogens
"Positive emotional energy is the key
to health, happiness and wellbeing." ~ Brian Tracy
Welcome to Purple Almond Wellness!
I ’m Tamara Hoerner, MHNE, ROHP/RNCP, founder of Purple Almond Wellness. I am a nutrition consultant and wellness educator. I work with middle-age individuals to help support insomnia, brain health and develop whole body wellness, in order to improve the quality of their mid-life years. Heart and Alzheimer’s diseases run in my family and I struggle with insomnia and weight loss, so I strive to help others with similar conditions. Using only nutrition, I rid my body of seasonal allergies, Psoriatic Arthritis and migraines, as well as cured my insomnia. I know what it takes to use food and whole body wellness, especially in middle age. As a wellness educator and Summa Cum Laude graduate of Hawthorn University, I develop personalized nutrition plans and wellness education sessions, to help clients.
For me, health isn't just about food it's about living a positive, happy, healthy life..
Where food is concerned, I'm all about getting back to the basics, good old fashioned traditional organic, whole food, the kind your great-grandmother used to eat. You'll find no processed foods here. Just good food to heal your whole body.
Stress plays a large part in the physical health of our body. I, therefore, believe in using anything that relieves stress and heals the body, including: mediation, yoga, music, laughter, inspiration and helping others. You'll find all these included in my blog as well.