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Answering Common Questions about Fats

Last updated 4 years ago

When most people talk about fat, they do so in a negative manner. While many kinds of fat are harmful, other kinds are essential to life. For the sake of your wellbeing, you should become more familiar with the different kinds of fat and their effect on your body. The medical professionals at Northside Hospital are always happy to answer any questions you have about fat. 

What role does fat play?

Though fat has earned a poor reputation, it is actually a vital part of your diet. Fat is a nutrient that helps supply the body with energy and keeps it warm. Some fats are responsible for helping the body absorb the nutrients it needs to stay healthy, while other fats are in charge of producing essential hormones. Everyone needs some fat in their diet—however, many people consume far more fat than their body needs, which is part of the reason why there’s an obesity epidemic.

Are there good kinds of fat?

There are many good kinds of fat. Some of the best fats come from nuts and fish. Omega-3 fatty acids, for example, are found in fish and are excellent for reducing your risk of heart disease. Monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat are considered “good fats,” while trans fat and saturated fat are considered “bad fats.” 

Which fats should I avoid?

Trans fats and saturated fats can increase your risk of heart disease, and should thus be a small part of your diet. Trans fats are found in cookies, doughnuts, vegetable shortening, and candy bars, and saturated fats are found in high-fat cuts of meat, ice cream, and whole-fat dairy products. Generally speaking, unhealthy fats are solid at room temperature while healthy fats are liquid.

The doctors and nurses at Northside Hospital are dedicated to maintaining the wellbeing of residents in St. Petersburg and elsewhere in the Tampa Bay area. To speak to a nurse about how you can reduce the fats in your diet call us at (888) 598-9586.


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Disclaimer: The materials provided are intended for informational purposes only. You should contact your doctor for medical advice. Use of and access to this website or other materials do not create a physician-patient relationship. The opinions expressed through this website are the opinions of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the hospital, medical staff, or any individual physician or other healthcare professional.
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