Week 5 - Fats
We need a little bit of fats in our diet, as they play several important roles, such as carrying fat soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K), provide essential fatty acids which the body cannot make and are also a source of energy.
There are various types of fat, with some being healthier than others. The two main groups of fats are saturated and unsaturated. Eating a diet high in saturated fat can raise the less healthy cholesterol (low density lipoprotein – LDL), which can increase the risk of heart conditions. Eating less saturated fats and replacing them with unsaturated fats can assist in maintaining normal cholesterol levels.
Also, eating too much fat can increase our risk of gaining weight because high fat foods can be higher in calories
These fats usually come from animal products such as fatty meat, ghee, butter, and lard; also dairy products such as ice cream and cheese. Some saturated fats come from vegetable sources such as coconut and palm oil. For more useful information on saturated fats click on the button below.
Guidelines on the maximum daily amount of saturated fats for children:
|4 -6yrs||7 -10yrs||From 11yrs|
These are found mainly in vegetables and fish. Unsaturated fats can be monounsaturated (e.g. olive, rapeseed, and avocado oil) or polyunsaturated (e.g. corn, sunflower and sesame oil). Omega 3 is also a polyunsaturated fat which can be found in oily fish, nuts and seeds.
Small amounts of trans fats can be found naturally in some foods like dairy and meat. They can also be in processed and hardened vegetable oils. Similar to saturated fats, trans fats can raise cholesterol levels in the blood.
How to reduce fat intake
Some easy simple steps can help you reduce total fat intake in your diet.
- Use healthier cooking methods such as baking, grilling, poaching, and steaming instead of frying.
- Try to control the amount of oil you are using by measuring with a teaspoon.
- When cooking meat remove visible fat, and with poultry take the skin off before cooking.
For more tips to reduce fat intake click on the button below.
Looking at labels can be helpful in checking the amount of total and saturated fat in products.
For more information see the following link on food labels
Task for child / young person
With your parents/carer make a salad using avocado
Don’t forget we need some fat in our diet; try to opt for healthier fats e.g. unsaturated fats.
Write down how saturated fats can be replaced with unsaturated fats in the families cooking e.g. poached eggs instead of fried eggs.
To supervise your child when they are performing the task for this week.