High in Fat and Healthy? Absolutely!
Healthy fats are something that should be included in everyone’s diets. The healthiest fats are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which include omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. Replacing less healthy fats like saturated and trans fats may offer health benefits like reducing risk factors for heart disease by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol (1). Included below are some healthy fats that are easy to incorporate into your diet.
Coconut oil has many uses from health to beauty; this is a fat that should definitely be incorporated into your life. Although coconut oil is a saturated fat lesser amounts have been shown to improve HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol) (4). This is because coconut oil is made up of MCT (medium-chain triglycerides). When you eat MCTs like coconut oil, they go straight to your liver, which then turns them in ketones which can have powerful benefits on the brain (5). The sweet taste of coconut oil makes it ideal for cooking or baking sweet treats. Just swap out butter for coconut oil when cooking and you’re done!
Avocados are extremely high in potassium, lutein (good for eye health), and fiber (2). The main fatty acid found in avocados is oleic acid, which research suggests is an anti-inflammatory and may protect against heart disease (2). On top of all these health benefits, avocados taste great and are easy to add to your diet. Add on top of any salad or sandwich for an extra boost of fat and flavor. Or use avocado oil to cook with instead of butter.
Olive oil, specifically extra virgin olive oil has numerous health benefits. The fatty acid mentioned above, oleic acid, comprises about 73% of the total oil content (3) and also includes vitamins E and K which has anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce risk of heart disease similar to the effects of avocado oil. Olive oil is also high in antioxidants which is good for the heart. Cooking with olive oil or adding it to salad dressings is an effortless way to incorporate this healthy, beneficial food into your regular diet.
Ghee (unclarified butter)
Ghee is made by removing the dairy proteins in butter, making it a good substitute for people with dairy sensitivity. It has a higher smoke point than butter, and is shelf stable, meaning it doesn’t need to be refrigerated. Ghee contains butyrate acid which plays an essential role in digestive health (6). It is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids which decreases LDL cholesterol (7). Again, substituting this healthy fat for butter is the simplest way to gain these health benefits.
Hopefully, you have a clearer understanding of the diverse types of healthy fatty oils you can include in your diet and what makes each one so great. Let me know your favorite types of healthy fats and how you include them in your diet below!