Fat And Energy
Fat is the other macronutrient from which we gain a significant amount of energy.
There are two types of fat – saturated and unsaturated (same calorie value regardless of type). We cannot and should not completely eliminate fat from our diet as it provides essential fatty acids. Our aim should be to reduce total fat intake for weight loss and modify type of fats eaten.
- Fat targets for weight loss: are <30% of energy should be from fat (less than 10% from saturated fat) which is approximately 30-40g/day for women 40-60g/day for men, with reduced overall energy.
Saturated fat is what we typically think of as bad fat – we therefore want to minimise our intake of this, as it increases the risk of heart disease through increased cholesterol levels, some types of cancer, diabetes and obesity. Saturated fat is found primarily in animal based foods and processed foods such as Beef, lamb and pork, Chicken, Eggs, Milk, Yoghurt, Cheese, Ice Cream and other dairy products, Butter and Cream, Coconut (and copha), Palm oil (used in many processed foods such as biscuits and pastries – often listed as “vegetable oil”) and chocolate, biscuits, crackers, potato chips, pastry, pies.
- There are2 types of unsaturated fat. Monounsaturated fat may help to lower cholesterol and is typically high in antioxidants such as vitamin E
Good sources include: Olives and olive oil, canola oil, peanuts, almonds, macadamias, hazelnuts , avocados
- Polyunsaturated fat includes Omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil, fish, seafod, green leafy vegetables, linseed and flaxseed and their oils and seafood have been shown to lower the risk of heart attacks. Omega-6 fatty acids in sunflower oil and safflower oil may
also reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.