Fats play an important role in a healthy, balanced diet, as they are needed for many chemical processes in the body. We certainly should not avoid them – rather the opposite! Let us have a look at five nutritious fats that should definitely not be missing from our diet.
1. Coconut Oil
Coconut products offer a wide variety of benefits for our body. Coconut oil is great not just for cooking, baking, and frying but is also a great addition to cocktails, oat flakes, and other foods.
This fat has antimicrobial, antibacterial, and anti-cancer effects. It improves digestion and nutrient absorption and keeps the intestines healthy. It protects the heart and blood vessels and helps manage type 2 diabetes. Furthermore, it keeps the kidneys and the liver healthy, the immune system functional, and last but not least improves the metabolism and supplies energy.
Coconut oil is composed mainly of saturated fatty acids, but unlike animal fats it does not contain any cholesterol. The fatty acids contained in it are medium-chain triglycerides that are easy to metabolize and are a rich energy source. Research implies that these saturated acids help with losing weight and increasing HDL levels (the ‘good cholesterol’) in the body.
Nuts contain a lot of nutrients, healthy fats, and proteins. They are one of the best sources of alpha-Linolenic acid and omega-3 acids. Those offer many health benefits – they lower cholesterol and prevent diseases, among others.
Nuts are also rich in the L-arginine amino acid, which has been proved to improve the functioning of the immune system, support the healing of wounds, strengthen blood vessels, and treat cardiovascular diseases.
Apart from that, nuts contain water-soluble fiber and vitamin E. The fiber helps lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels, while vitamin E is a strong antioxidant, which is vital for keeping the immune system, skin, and DNA healthy.
Popular types of nuts are for example almonds, walnuts, and Brazil nuts. Try them in smoothies or salads or just eat them raw. Another way is to try some of the various nut butters available, but these do not mix well with fruit, so take care not to combine these two.