Healthy fats to eat

9 Healthy fats everyone should be eating daily

Are healthy fats important?

 

Fats should be part of any healthy diet because just like protein and carbohydrates, your body needs fats to aid in various body functions. This includes helping in the absorption of nutrients, hormone function, brain memory, and as a source of energy.

 

Despite all the controversies surrounding healthy fats, it is important to incorporate them into your daily diet. However, we need to keep in mind that not all fats are made equal. This is where most of the confusion comes in.

 

How exactly do you know which fats are healthy? Healthy fats refer to monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.

 

These fats are often referred to as the good fats as they work in various ways to promote your health such as improving heart health, boost brain health, and even help you manage your weight.

 

These are the fats that you should add to your daily diet. The best way to add these fats to your diet is through high-fat foods.

 

 

Best food sources of healthy fats

1. Avocados

Avocados are perhaps the most well-known food sources of fats and it’s for good reason. Not only do they have rich texture and flavor that goes well with any foods, but this fruit is also incredibly nutritious

.

Avocados are made up of about 75% fats making it one of the best sources of healthy fats specifically monounsaturated fats (1). These fats have anti-inflammatory effects in the body in addition to reducing the risk of cancer and heart disease.

 

Besides, avocados are also a good source of high-fiber that promotes good gut health Avocados have been proven to be effective weight-loss foods that can help you lose weight faster and even help you with stubborn belly fat.

 

Related: 10 Foods to eat to lose weight naturally

 

Add it to your diet

  • Half an avocado a day is more than enough.
  • To incorporate it into your diet, you can add it to your breakfast toast or enjoy it with your lunch or dinner vegetables.

 

 

2. Fatty fish

Diets such as the Mediterranean diet that advocate weekly serving of fatty fish have been proven to be among the most heart-healthy diets in the world.

 

Fatty fish are a great source of fat and high protein, that goes a long way in boosting your health. They’re especially high in omega-3 fatty acids that promote brain and heart health.

 

The best fatty fish to consider include: Fresh tuna, wild-caught salmon, sardines, herring, mackerel, trout, anchovies, halibut, oysters

 

A serving of mackerel will provide you with 15g of fat (2). A diet rich in fatty fish will help you feel healthier and also reduce the risk of brain diseases such as dementia.

 

Add it to your diet

  • Aim for 2-3 weekly servings of fatty fish to your diet
  • Enjoy oven baked salmon for dinner or tuna salad for dinner

 

 

3. Dark chocolate

Dark chocolate is often referred to as a superfood due to its rich nutritional profile. Not only will it help you curb cravings but just 1-ounce serving will provide you with 9g of healthy fats (3)

 

These fats help to protect your heart and your brain. This is why dark chocolate is often among the top brain-boosting foods.

 

In addition to its healthy fats profile, dark chocolate is also one of the best sources of antioxidants. These antioxidants help to lower blood pressure reducing the risk of heart disease.

 

Add it to your diet

  • To enjoy these health benefits choose dark chocolate with at least 70% cacao or more.
  • Aim for a 1-ounce serving of about 28grams.

 

 

4. Chia seeds

Despite their small size, chia seeds are one of your best sources of healthy fats.

 

Just a single serving of 1-ounce has about 9 grams of fats (4). Most of which as omega-3 fatty acids These healthy fats can help you lower blood pressure and are also anti-inflammatory.

 

Also, chia seeds are a good source of high-fiber that can help you lose weight by making you feel fuller and reducing appetite.

 

Add it to your diet

  • Just 2 tablespoon is enough
  • You can have them chia pudding or add them to your breakfast smoothies and overnight oats.

 

 

5. Nuts

Nuts have almost become synonymous with healthy snacks.

 

Not only are they full of protein and fiber making them perfect healthy snacks for weight loss. They are also high in healthy fats making them an ideal addition to a healthy diet.

 

Besides, nuts are also very high in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Just 1-ounce serving of almonds has 14grams of fats (5) while walnuts will provide 18.5 g (6)

 

Nut and seed butter are also a great way to benefit from the healthy fats available in nuts

 

Add it to your diet

  • Enjoy them as healthy snacks between meals or sprinkle the on a fresh salad for extra crunch
  • Aso incorporate nut and seed butter into your daily use or add them to fruits such as apple slices

 

 

6. Whole Eggs

Whole eggs are probably recognized as the cheapest source of quality high-protein.

 

Despite previous reports that advised people to only focus on egg whites, recent studies report that it is more beneficial to your body to eat whole eggs. One large boiled egg contains a serving of about 5g of healthy fats (7).

 

They’re often on the list of best weight loss foods as they’re incredibly filling. Besides, they contain a little bit of all the nutrients needed to promote good health.

 

Opting for eggs for breakfast can help you eat less throughout the day.

 

Add it to your diet

  • Hard-boiled eggs can serve as a great healthy snack on the go.
  • Include it n your breakfast either hard-boiled or in a vegetable omelet.

 

 

7. Flaxseeds

Though often unnoticed, flax seeds are now slowly being recognized as one of the most nutritious superfood seeds. Just 1 tablespoon of flaxseeds provides a good amount of omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and protein.

 

The omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to reduce the risk of heart diseases such as stroke. 2 tablespoons of whole flax seeds provide about 9g of healthy fats (8)

 

Add it to your diet

  • To add them to your diet, you can add them to your breakfast smoothie or sprinkle ground flax seeds in full-fat yogurt.

 

 

8. Extra Virgin Olive oil

Olive oil is considered one of the healthiest oils you can use due to its nutrient-dense profile.

 

Heart-healthy diets such as the Mediterranean diet often recommend it as it has been proven to promote good health in various studies. Not only is it a good source of healthy fats, but its also rich in antioxidants, Vitamin E and K.

 

I tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil will serve you with 14g of fats(9)

 

Add it to your diet

Use it sparingly in your cooking or as part of your homemade salad dressing.

 

 

9. Full-fat yogurt

Unlike other high-fat dairy products, full-fat yogurt also contains probiotics that are essential for good gut health. As a healthy snack option, yogurt can help you lose weight and also boost your heart health.

 

Add it to your diet

Always read the label to ensure you have full-fat yogurt with no added sugar. You can add some fresh fruit for a healthy snack  or add it to your breakfast smoothies

 

 

10. Tofu

Even though tofu is widely recognized as a source of plant-based protein, it’s actually a good source of healthy fats for those on a vegan or vegetarian diet too.

 

100g serving of extra firm tofu provides about 4g of healthy fats(10). This is in addition to protein and calcium.

 

Add it to your diet

To add tofu to your diet, you can replace one meal instead of having red meats opt for tofu instead.

 

 

Which fats are healthy

Healthy fats are important to your diet. To take advantage of all the benefits it is important to understand what fats you should add and those that you should avoid.

 

Good fats are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. The best sources of these fats are the food sources mentioned above. They are considered healthy fats as they promote your health in several ways.

 

On the other hand, unhealthy fats are fats such as artificial trans fats. These are often found in commercially prepared foods and some vegetable oils.

 

They’re bad for your health as they can cause inflammation and increase the risk of chronic diseases. Trans fats are often listed as hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated on vegetable oils.

 

You can also find them in

  1. Fried foods
  2. Packages snacks
  3. Commercial bakes goods
  4. Vegetable shortening

 

To maintain a healthy diet avoid unhealthy trans fats and add more healthy fats.

 

 

Tips for adding healthy fats to your diet

 

1. Follow a Mediterranean diet

If you would love to add more healthy fats but can’t seem to work with your current diet. Try the heart-healthy Mediterranean diet. It emphasizes good fats and guidelines will help you learn how to add ore healthy fats into your diet easily.

 

 

2. Eliminate trans fats

Eliminate artificial trans fat in your diet. It’s bad for your general health and increases the risk of heart disease

 

 

3. Cook with olive oil

If you find incorporating all these healthy fats into your diet, a simple hack is to cook your meals in extra virgin olive oil.

 

 

4. Snack on healthy fats.

Snacks are part of any healthy diet and if you have to snack, why not opt for the best? Foods such as olives and nuts are not only good sources of healthy fats but are also incredibly filling.

 

 

5. Make a habit of eating avocados daily

Avocados just like other fruits should be part of your daily diet. In addition to healthy fats that protect your heart and reduce the risk of diseases, avocados will also boost your brain function.

 

 

Conclusion

Healthy fats are an essential nutrient in any healthy diet.  As a nutrient, healthy fats help the body function by aiding in various functions such as vitamin absorption and boosting brain memory.

 

Besides, healthy fats have been shown to boost health by reducing the risk of certain chronic diseases such as heart disease.

 

The best sources of healthy fats are food sources. Foods such as avocados, chia seeds, fatty fish and nuts among the best sources. Besides, you want to eliminate all sources of unhealthy artificial trans fat from your diet.