Understanding Your Fats and Fiber Essay examples

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Unhealthy and Healthy Fats There are four major dietary fats, two are considered to be unhealthy fats and two are healthy fats and they all have different chemical structures and physical properties. The unhealthy fats consist of saturated fats and trans-fats; the healthy fats are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. Saturated fats occur naturally within the body and raise the HDL (high density lipids). HDL cholesterol is often called “good cholesterol” because high levels of HDL in the blood are associated with a reduction in the risk of heart disease. (Grosvenor & Smolin,
2012) Animal foods, like dairy products and fatty meats, have the most saturated fat.
Trans fats are considered man made and are formed through the food that we eat. Food manufacturers often add trans fat to foods to make their shelf life longer. This is done through the process of hydrogenation or adding the maximum amount of hydrogen atoms to vegetable oil. Trans fats are found in tub margarine and shortening, in deep-fried foods, in baked goods such as cakes and breads, crackers, and cookies. Both saturated and trans fat is equally unhealthy for the body. Too much of both saturated fat and trans fat have been attributed to health problems such as clogged arteries, an increased risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
Fiber and Lipids Fiber is an important part of good nutrition and mainly consists of plant foods that the body cannot digest or absorb. Such foods include barley and oats, vegetables such as peas and beans, and in fruits like apples and citrus. There are two types of fiber, soluble fiber, which dissolves in water and lowers cholesterol and glucose levels; and insoluble fiber, which is not broken down into glucose before it gets to the colon and promotes movement within the digestive tract. Fiber helps to maintain a healthy weight, prevents and relieves constipation, and lowers the risk of diabetes and heart disease. Lipids, also known as fatty acids, are natural organic molecules that cannot be dissolved in water. A lipid molecule is not charged and is therefore considered a nonpolar molecule.
Because they are nonpolar and water is polar lipids are not soluble in water. Similar to the phrase, ‘water and oil do not mix’. Another type of lipid, a