The Difference Between Monounsaturated and Polyunsaturated Fats

Many diet fads promote a low fat way of eating, however there are different types of fats that you should know about. Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats in particular do not deserve the bad reputation of fat. In fact, these types of fat are a good, healthy addition to your daily eating routine and you should try and get most of your fat intake from food sources containing them.

As well as being highly nutritious, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats can also help to lessen your risk of contracting certain diseases and illnesses.

Monounsaturated Fat

Monounsaturated fats can help to lower your bad cholesterol (LDL) levels, especially if eaten instead of foods containing saturated or trans fats, such as butter and fried fast foods. Eating monounsaturated fats regularly can also help to reduce inflammation, which is associated with a number of diseases. If you are a diabetic, monounsaturated fats can be particularly helpful, as they can help to regulate your blood sugar and insulin levels.

Sources Of Monounsaturated Fat

The best source of monounsaturated fats are liquid oils, including olive, peanut and canola oils. Instead of using lard or butter when cooking, try replacing them with the aforementioned liquid oils for an easy way to increase your intake of beneficial monounsaturated fats. Additional sources of monounsaturated fats include nuts such as pecans, hazelnuts, almonds and pumpkin seeds. Avocados are also a great source of monounsaturated fats.

Polyunsaturated Fat

Like monounsaturated fats, polyunsaturated fats can help you to lower your levels of bad cholesterol (LDL). They can also helping to boost your levels of good cholesterol (HDL), which can lower your risk of heart disease. Omega-3 fatty acids are a type of polyunsaturated fat which are beneficial to your heart health. They may also help to reduce your risk of contracting type 2 diabetes.

Sources Of Polyunsaturated Fat

Flax, soybean and corn oils are all healthy sources of polyunsaturated fats. Try using them next when you cook. Walnuts and flaxseeds are good sources of polyunsaturated fats. Go for fatty fish to increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids, such as mackerel, salmon and sardines.