Good fats, bad fats and old chestnuts
While it’s true that we need some fats in our food, the type and the quantity are the most important factors
OLIVE AND RAPESEED
protective effects are due to two fundamental components: monounsaturated fatty acids and antioxidant substances. Each tablespoon provides about 120 calories.
Rapeseed oil is produced here in Ireland and is a fantastic less expensive alternative to extra virgin olive oil, with similar health benefits. Its higher heating temperature makes it ideal for cooking .
Coconut oil has been a staple in tropical regions of the world for thousands of years. Like all oils it is 100 per cent fat, but the type of plant fat it contains is unique – more than 85 per cent of the fat is saturated, but much of it is in the form of medium- chain fatty acids, which don’t appear to have the same adverse effects on health as other saturated fats.
A new oil on the shelves, Camelina, is grown, pressed and bottled on the Newgrange farm at Crewbane in Slane. Its nutritional profile of healthy unsaturated fat is often compared to linseed or flaxseed oil, but it has the added benefit of a higher vitamin E content and a longer shelf-life. Its taste is nutty in flavour and it has a high smoke point, making it another great choice for cooking and roasting if want an alternative to rapeseed oil .
Bananas are low-fat fruit, and though higher in calories than many other fruits, their calories come from carbohydrate – excellent for refuelling before, during and after exercise. They are also a rich source of potassium which helps regulate blood pressure and contain vitamin B6, important for healthy skin and hair, reducing fatigue and easing premenstrual symptoms.
Swap blended oils for olive, rapeseed, or Camelina oils.
Swap high-fat cheese and dairy for low-fat dairy products. Aim for three servings of low-fat dairy every day.
Swap refined carb crisps and snack packs for unsalted nuts and seeds. Limit your portion to a small handful.
Swap fried foods and takeaways for meals prepared at home with a healthy oil.
Swap sausages, burgers and fatty meats for lean meats, oily fish and pulses.
Replace certain hard fats in baking with coconut oil.