Where Do I Find Monounsaturated & Polyunsaturated Fats?
The truth is that not all fats are created equal. And in this article, we’re going to talk about the “good guys” – the good fats that are beneficial to your health.
So far, in the Fitness Fats series, we’ve discussed the disadvantages of diets that have too little and too much, while also covering the advantages of maintaining a higher fat diet. But it’s not just about the amount you take in. It’s also about the type you consume each day.
What Fats Are Good For You?
For years, all fats were considered bad. Hence, why there are still so many low-fat foods present in the grocery store to this day. However, recent studies over the years have taken this false notion that “all fat is bad” and have turned it on its head.
There are two distinct and different categories of fat that people consume daily. These groups of fats are affectionately called “good fats” and “bad fats.” Good consist of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, while the bad consist of saturated and trans fats.
Today we’re going to cover the ins and outs of the good fats and how they affect your sports nutrition plan.
Benefits Of Monounsaturated and Polyunsaturated Fats
There are quite a few health benefits that researchers have found are directly related to monounsaturated and polyunsaturated:
Benefits Of Monounsaturated Fats
- Reduces bad cholesterol levels
- Lowers risk of heart disease
- Helps promote weight loss
- Reduces belly blubber
- Decreases the risk of cancer
Benefits Of Polyunsaturated Fats
- Produces omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids
- Reduces bad cholesterol levels
- Helps develop and maintain the body’s cells
- Reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke
In addition to the health benefits, both also provide the following performance-based benefits:
- Provides a highly concentrated source of energy
- It contains essential vitamins for optimal performance – A, D, E, and K.
- Regulates blood sugar
Foods That Contain The Good Stuff
The main food groups that provide good sources of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated are seed oils, nut oils and butter, beans, nuts, and fish:
- Olive oil
- Soybean oil
- Canola oil
- Sesame oil
- Assorted nuts (almonds, peanuts, pecans, etc.)
- Assorted seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, etc.)
- Fish (salmon, mackerel, and tuna)
How To Incorporate Good Fats Into Your Diet
The “foolproof” way to incorporate more good into your nutrition plan is to be conscious of what you’re feeding yourself daily. Instead of eating processed foods (that are high in trans fat), try some of the alternatives below:
- Eat nuts and seeds for snacks.
- Keep your shelves stocked with canned tuna and salmon.
- Use olive oil as a base dressing for salads.
- Cook your vegetables in oil.
- Use natural and organic nut butter
- Eat more avocados
I hope this series of articles has helped you get a better idea of how you can improve your performance with the right rider nutrition!
Editor’s Note: This is Part 4: Good Fats of the Fitness Fats rider nutrition series – a four-part series where we explore the effects of dietary fat on rider performance. Here’s a link to Part 1: Too little and Part 2: Too much, and Part 3: Bad Fats if you missed them.
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