What is it?
It is a collection of fatty acids that in various combinations create cholesterol, trans fat, saturated fat or unsaturated fat. Examples of fatty foods are oils, butters, nuts and fish.
1 gram of fat gives 9 calories. Fat chains differ from type to type and Lifesum uses the average number, with the recommendation at about 1/3 of the total calorie intake. On the standard diet that is 35 E% and for a person eating 2000 calories it is 75-80 grams of fat each day.
Why do we need it?
Fat gives the body energy and is stored in the fat stores as a reserve energy. It works as a heat insulator and protects the organs in the body. The body needs it to repair and produce hormones for the uptake of vitamins A, D, E and K; the fat-soluble vitamins.
Some of the fatty acids are essential and can't be created in the body, so they need to be added through food. Two examples of these are a-linolenic acid (omega-3) and linoleic acid (omega-6).
What if I have too much?
As with other nutrients, if you over consume fat and eat more than the recommendation, the risk for weight-gain is high. The body doesn't have to alter the fat you eat in order to store it, which means it has a low energy cost and can easily be added to fat stores.
Foods to eat more of (these contain a lot of healthy fat):
- coconut milk
- nuts (Brazil, Macadamia, Pecan, Walnuts, Hazelnuts)
- oils (rapeseed, walnut, olive, soy bean, sesame seed)
- fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, tuna ex.)
Foods to eat in moderation:
- cream cheese
- cheese (Blue, Cheddar, Roquefort, Muenster, Brie)
- peanut butter
Foods that contains fat you should eat less of:
- milk chocolate
- dark chocolate
- granola bars
- fried foods (french fries, potato chips/ crisps, nuggets, patties ex.)
- lunch meats
- ham & cheese rolls
To get the daily amount of fat for one day you can have (all suggestions combined for one day's meals)*;
- 1 slice of dark bread, cream cheese and smoked salmon for breakfast
- 1 serving of mixed salad, mackerel and vinaigrette for lunch
- ½ avocado sprinkled with sea salt as a snack
*Calculated for a person eating 2000 calories a day.
To read more about fat and see what we base our recommendations on, read more here: