Cholesterol Advice

Monounsaturated Fats and Cholesterol- Their Healthy Relationship

Not everybody knows that not all types of fats are bad for health. Quite unlike trans-fats and saturated fats, monosaturated fats are considered good for health. As a matter of fact, it is recommended that people increase consumption of monosaturated fatty acids over other fats.

What are Monosaturated Fats?
From the perspective of their molecular structure, monosaturated fats are those fatty acids that have a single double-bond in the entire hydrocarbon chain. As a result of this single double bond, monosaturated fats have free-flowing characteristic and remain liquid at the room temperature.

Monosaturated Fats and Cholesterol
It has been indicated by researches that monosaturated fats are instrumental in lowering cholesterol levels in the blood. They are directly responsible to lower LDL cholesterol. Also, it has been suggested that monosaturated fats might be responsible to increase the levels of HDL cholesterol. However, this is still debated.

Health Benefits of Monosaturated Fats
As mentioned above, monosaturated fats help lower cholesterol levels in the blood. This reduces the chances of development of coronary heart diseases. At the same time, they are also responsible to promote insulin resistance in the body. In case of children, increased consumption of monosaturated fatty acids is associated with healthier serum lipid profiles.

So How Much Monosaturated Fats Should I Consume?
Just because monosaturated fats are healthy for you doesn't mean that you can consume as much as you want. Like all other fats, monosaturated fats too should be consumed in moderation. They release around 9 calories per gram. The sum total of the calories derived from monosaturated fats should not be more than 30 per cent of the total calories consumed by you.

Source of Monosaturated Fats
Monosaturated fats can be derived from plant sources such as the following:

* Avocados
* Canola oil
* Cereal
* Corn oil
* Grapeseed oil
* Ground nut oil
* Peanut oil
* Popcorn
* Oatmeal
* Olive oil
* Safflower oil
* Sesame oil
* Sunflower oil
* Tea seed oil
* Whole grain wheat

The best source of monosaturated fats amongst the above mentioned plant products is tea-seed oil. It has up to 80 per cent content of monosaturated fatty acids. Apart from tea-seed oil, olive oil is also a good source of monosaturated fats. It has up to 75 per cent monosaturated fats. The third best source of monosaturated fats is canola oil. It contains up to 60 per cent monosaturated fatty acids (by weight).

Monosaturated fats are not the only ones which are beneficial to health. You can also take recourse to polyunsaturated fats to lower your cholesterol levels. As a matter of fact, these would be more suitable if anybody suffers from elevated cholesterol levels in the blood.