Saturated and unsaturated fats are necessary for the body to be healthy; however, too much fat in a diet is unhealthy. It is suggested that your diet have a higher amount of unsaturated fats in your diet then saturated fats to prevent heart disease and help your good cholesterol levels.
Effects on Your Health
Excessive consumption of saturated fats is unhealthy and will aid in the development of atherosclerosis and heart disease. Unsaturated fats are high in antioxidants and are thought to be good to eat when your cholesterol levels are high.
Saturated fats have been found to increase LDL or Low Density Lipoproteins which is considered to be bad cholesterol. Foods that are rich in saturated fats include refined carbohydrates and foods rich in trans fatty acids. Unsaturated fats are known to increase High Density Lipoprotein or HDL which is considered to be good cholesterol. They also decrease LDL. Unsaturated fats include onions, flax oil, fish and foods that are rich in fiber.
Recommended Daily Consumption
You should not consume more than 10% of your daily caloric intake of saturated fats. Unsaturated fats should not make up more than 30% of your daily caloric intake.
Common foods that contain saturated fats include whole milk, meat, butter, peanut butter, margarine, fried foods, frozen dinners, cheese and vegetable oils. These foods tend to have a long shelf life and do not spoil quickly.
Common foods that contain unsaturated fats include soybean oil, canola oil, olive oil, avocado, sunflower oil, fish, fish oils, walnuts, red meats and flax. These foods do not have a long shelf live and will quickly spoil.