Why Fat is Important For a Balanced Diet

In many cases, when people are seeking positive dietary changes there are usually a number of key food groups which they choose to cut out. The most common foods to be scrapped are those which are high in sugar, processed foods, carbohydrates and in some cases fat. The benefits of cutting out sugar and processed food are long documented, whilst when it comes to carbohydrates it’s often a matter of preference depending on personal goals. With fat however, the discussion is more complex.

Cutting out fat completely is no easy feat, partly because there are various types of types of fat (saturated, trans, unsaturated – just to name a few). Now, not all of these are bad for you, in fact saturated and unsaturated fats in particular have some key health benefits. The key however is moderation.

17359146_1844461319166808_3284128171188716019_oConsuming too much fat raises cholesterol levels, which can increase the risk of heart disease, whilst consuming too little fat disrupts hormone levels, weakens bones and impairs digestion. Small amounts of the right fat are essential. Take omega-3 for example (an unsaturated fat) – the body is unable to produce this itself, so if you’re not consuming the right foods you’ll be missing out on essential nutrients.

Fats help the body absorb vitamins A, D and E, which can only be absorbed with the help of fats. Vitamin A is vital for good vision and a healthy immune system, whilst ‘D’ is important for healthy tooth and bone development and ‘E’ is essential for maintaining healthy skin.

Fat is also a good source of energy, with the average gram providing 9kcal of energy, compared to 4kcal for carbs and protein. The key though is to eat the right amount for the energy you need, a facet which applies to all food groups, not just fat.

Overall, fat has an important role to play in a healthy balanced diet – with unsaturated and saturated fats in particular providing key health benefits. This is just one of the reasons why all meals in our Pura macronutrient meal plans come with the right portion of fats, to help you meet your health and fitness goals.

For more information on our meal plans, click here

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