Good fats you should eat

Which foods contain fats you should eat?

Good fats you should eat

Fat. We’re told to be fearful it. If there’s fat in our food it’s going make us fat. But just how wicked is fat?

The first thing to realise is that there are good fats and bad fats. Bad fats increase cholesterol and your risk of other diseases, while good fats support your general health and are essential for maintaining physical and brain health. 

If eaten in large amounts, all fats can contribute to weight gain. To get a comprehensive understanding of which fats are good and which you should avoid, you need to know the difference. 

Good fats: monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats. These play a part in weight loss and management, mental health, and overall body health. 

Bad fats: trans fats and saturated fats. There are responsible for weight gain, clogged arteries, heart conditions and diabetes. Foods containing bad fats should be limited in or omitted from the diet. However, cheese, full cream milk and non-lean meats may be eaten in small amounts.

So which foods contain good fats? 

Monounsaturated fats:

  • monounsaturated oils – e.g. coldpressed olive, peanut, canola, sesame, sunflower oil
  • avocados
  • olives
  • nuts (almonds, macadamia nuts, hazelnuts, pecans, cashews, peanuts, peanut butter).

Polyunsaturated fats:

  • omega-3 rich fish – e.g. salmon, tuna, mackerel, herring, trout, sardines\
  • tofu
  • soy milk
  • sunflower, sesame, flax, and linseeds
  • soybean, corn, safflower oil
  • omega-6 rich nut – e.g. walnuts, pine nuts, Brazil nuts.

The Heart Foundation recommends Australians eat two or three serves (150 grams per serve) of oily fish every week. Ground seeds and nuts can be sprinkled on breakfast cereals and salads, or eaten whole and unsalted as a snack.

How much fat you should eat per day depends on how many calories your body requires to function daily. One simple, sensible guide often suggested is a diet made up of 40 per cent carbohydrates, 30 per cent protein and 30 per cent fat.

Which foods should you limit? 

Saturated fats:

  • fatty and processed meats
  • chicken skin
  • butter
  • cheese
  • ice cream
  • palm and coconut oil
  • full-fat milk and cream

Trans fats:

  • packaged and commercially baked foods – e.g. pastries, pies, chips, crackers, pastries, cookies, doughnuts, muffins, cakes
  • Fried and takeaway foods – e.g. hot chips, fried chicken, chicken nuggets, crumbed fish
  • chocolate and lollies
  • hydrogenated fats.



    To make a comment, please register or login
    12th Mar 2015
    Just about the only fat that everyone agrees is bad are transfats.

    Saturated fat is not the baddie it has been made out to be. Witness the reversal last week that eggs are good not bad even though they contain saturated fat.

    Not all vegetable/seed oils are equal either and not all are "good". There is strong evidence that many should infact be avoided.

    Coconut oil is not a baddie either. More and more evidence is being released that shows it behaves quite differently in the body than some other saturated fats and it does actually have many health giving properties. Likewise butter - especially from grass fed cows is better than most margarines that have more in common with axel grease than food.

    The real foods to limit are those that are made in factories (anything in a box or a packet, anything with an ingredient list that reads like a science experiment) from things you can't pronounce and that includes manufactured meats as well as the usual junk foods.

    If your Grandmother wouldn't recognise it, don't eat it. Use fresh foods, cook from scratch and watch the portion size. Its not that hard.
    12th Mar 2015
    You should be a writer/blogger, KSS - that's one of the best summaries (of such a potentially wide-ranging topic) that I've ever read! Your penult para is priceless!
    14th Sep 2016
    Unless you are an authority KSS I don't think you have t he right to make such comments but I do agree with your last two paragraphs.

    Eggs have been given the thumbs up years ago not just last week.

    Shop in the outside aisles of your shop as most of the stuff in the middle rows is rubbish.

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