mportance of vegetarian healthy fats
Do you know the vegetarian healthy fats that you can consume on a regular basis in your diet? Most people are unaware about the fact that the food we consume consists of mainly two types of fats. The first one is healthy fats and the second one is unhealthy fats. The foods that provide unhealthy fats contain trans fats, saturated fats and high cholesterol content. Over consumption of such types of foods causes several life threatening ailments and diseases such as obesity, heart diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes, etc.
On the other side, inclusion of the healthy fats in your daily diet such as polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats can lead to several health improvements such as increased metabolic rate, enhancement in the immune power and strengthening of muscle tissues, etc. Even American Heart Association (AHA) strongly recommends to make use of plant based monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats in our daily diet. This is why we should emphasize on consuming foods that contain high amount of polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats. Read further to discover the best food sources that can provide you high amount of vegetarian healthy fats.
Primary sources of vegetarian health fats
1) Monounsaturated fats – A medical research carried out by Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) shows that our daily fat intake should be in between 20% – 35% of our total calorie intake. DGA also recommends eating the foods that are rich in terms of polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats. Rather than animal based products such as meat, chicken, fish it is much healthier option to go for only plant based diet. Vegetarian healthy fats are safe and free from any side effects for your body. Monounsaturated fats mainly consist of Omega-9 fatty acids. The primary food sources from where you can get sufficient monounsaturated fats are provided as follows.
a) Vegetable oils – Vegetable oils such as olive oil, canola oil, sunflower oil, peanut oil, sesame oil, etc. are rich in terms of monounsaturated fats. They are easily available at local food stores and you can use them in your daily cooking. Some of the popular Italian foods that are usually made by using olive oil are tomato sauce, bruschetta, and pizza sauce. You can use these vegetable oils in your cabbage salads and salad dressing.
b) Seeds and nuts – Naturally found seeds and nuts contain high amount of monounsaturated fats. Some of the healthy nuts and seeds that consist of healthy fats are peanuts, Brazil nuts, pecans, hazelnuts, almonds, cashews, macadamia nuts, and pistachios. You can also include several types of butters made from these seeds and nuts such as almond butter, cashew butter and peanut butter in your daily diet. Some of the popular seeds that consist of monounsaturated fats are sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, flaxseeds and pumpkin seeds. Make use of these seeds in your daily diet or you can also use the seed butter and paste such as sesame seed butter and tahini in your diet.
c) Other important sources – There are some fruits such as olives and avocados that also provide monounsaturated fats after regular consumption. You can also use green and black olives as your pizza toppings and in the fruit salads.
2) Polyunsaturated fats – After monounsaturated fats, the top vegetarian healthy fats can be the food sources that provide polyunsaturated fats. Polyunsaturated fats mainly consist of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids. These types of fats are mainly responsible for lowering down the high cholesterol levels and also reduce the risks of severe heart diseases. Regular consumption of the foods containing polyunsaturated fats can lead to elimination of the health ailments such as diabetes, strokes, rheumatoid arthritis, irregular heartbeats, lupus, eczema and inflammatory bowel disease, etc. The primary food sources that provide polyunsaturated fats are as follows.
a) Vegetable oils – Apart from the vegetables oils that are rich in terms of monounsaturated fats, we can also consume oils consisting of polyunsaturated fats. Some of the most popular vegetables oils that provide high amount of polyunsaturated fats are cottonseed oil, soybean oil, safflower oil, corn oil, sesame oil and sunflower oil. Some of these oils consist of Omega-3 fatty acids while others contain Omega-6 fatty acids. Both of these fatty acids are essential for proper functioning of your body.
b) Nuts, seeds and other common foods – Just like the case of monounsaturated fats, there are some nuts and seeds that provide high amount of polyunsaturated fats too. Pine nuts, walnuts, butternuts and some seeds such as flaxseed, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, watermelon seeds, chia seeds, pecans, and sesame seeds consist of rich polyunsaturated fats. Some other types of common foods that can provide you higher proportions of polyunsaturated fats are mayonnaise, soft margarine, salad dressings, leafy vegetables, krill, algae, etc.
Regular consumption of the above foods in your daily diet can provide you high amount of vegetarian healthy fats. Try to include the above mentioned foods in your daily diet regimen and stay healthy all the time.