If you are someone who avoids eating fatty foods at all cost because you think they will make your waistline expand, then it’s time to get the skinny on fats. Let me start by saying that fats are not all created equal. Trans fats are the bad guys. If you say hello to trans fats too often then you can definitely say goodbye to your skinny jeans and the quality of your health. But there are a whole other class of fats out there that our bodies actually need for energy, cell growth, nutrient absorption, hormone balance, and more.
Healthy fats include polyunsaturated, monounsaturated, and saturated fats. Before we go over the 10 healthy fat foods that every balanced diet should include, let’s take a quick lesson on healthy fats.
Unsaturated fats – This type of fat is typically liquid at room temperature and can be found in foods like olive oil, seeds, nuts, and seafood. I’ll talk more about those foods in just a minute.
Saturated fats – This type of fat is typically solid at room temperature. While saturated fats are often viewed as “bad” fats, certain sources are considered great for our health. Take coconut oil for example!
Often referred to as a “superfood,” avocados are among the most nutrient-dense fruits on earth. They contain a long list of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Plus, they’re loaded with protein, fiber, and fat. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), avocados contain around 29 grams of fat. Don’t let that high number scare you, though. Studies have found avocados are amazing for health. They are known to:
- Aid weight loss
- Improve heart health
- Lower bad cholesterol levels
- Fight cancer
- Improve digestion
- Support brain function
- Protect against insulin resistance and diabetes
- Balance hormones
- Support healthy skin
- Support eye health
After reading the health benefits, it’s no wonder avocados achieved “superfood” status.
When it comes to incorporating avocados into your daily diet, they’re extremely versatile. Aside from traditional guacamole, you can mash them up and replace butter on toast. You can also add them to soups, salads, and smoothies. If you like to bake, you can even use them as a fat replacement in baked goods.
Over the years, eggs have gotten a pretty bad reputation. Some people avoid eggs altogether because they believe the high fat and cholesterol content make them unhealthy. Then there are the people who only eat egg whites because they believe the yolk is the only unhealthy part. According to researchers, the truth is, eating whole eggs is extremely good for you. It’s important to remember that not all fats and cholesterol are created equal. Eggs are actually a great source of protein, healthy fats, and good cholesterol. Plus, eating just one egg provides your body with 13 essential vitamins and minerals. Oh, and did I mention that one large egg is only 70 calories?
If you want to reap the amazing health benefits of eggs, you will want to eat the entire egg. Yes, that includes the controversial yolk. According to experts at the Egg Nutrition Center, key nutrients such as choline, vitamin B12, vitamin D, and iron are found exclusively in the yolk. Consuming the nutrients from whole egg can help with:
- Weight management
- Improve muscle strength
- Support healthy brain function
- Support eye health
- Support healthy pregnancy
So which type of eggs are the healthiest? According to the Egg Nutrition Center, the answer may surprise you. They say:
“The nutrient content of eggs is similar regardless of color (white or brown), grade (AA, A, or B), or how they are raised (organic, free-range, and conventional).”