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A Matter of Fat: Fat Basics

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1 A Matter of Fat: Fat Basics
The purpose of this presentation is to help you (adults) learn about fat in the diet.

2 What is fat? FAT is a nutrient is a source of energy
adds taste and texture to foods makes us feel full longer helps absorb fat-soluble vitamins Sometimes we hear about fat and all the negative aspects – like a high fat diet can increase the risk of heart disease. Although true, we often forget that fat is an important nutrient in our diet – we need it for normal body functions. Some fats are essential; meaning, we need to eat them because our body cannot make these fats. Fat: is a nutrient provides us with energy adds a wonderful taste and texture to foods makes us feel full longer because we digest fat more slowly than other nutrients helps us absorb fat-soluble vitamins like vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin E, and vitamin K.

3 Fat - Part of a Healthy Diet
20 – 35% of total Calories from fat 2000-Calorie diet = 44 – 78 grams of fat Or 11 – 19 ½ teaspoons 1500-Calorie diet = 33 – 58 grams of fat Or 8 ¼ – 14 ½ teaspoons Fat is part of a healthy diet. Current recommendations (Dietary Reference Intakes) suggest that adults consume between 20 and 35% of their total Calories as fat. This range reflects a variety of foods selected each day and represents a healthy intake. Levels above 35% may increase the risk of conditions such as heart disease and obesity. Levels below 20% may increase the risk of not consuming or absorbing enough essential fats or fat soluble vitamins. Typically a 2000-Calorie diet is used as a reference – this is an average for all adults. A 2000-Calorie diet would mean that 20 to 35% of fat would be between 44 and 78 grams or in the Fat in Foods presentation it would be 11 to 19 ½ teaspoons of fat. One teaspoon equals 4 grams of fat. Women, smaller adults, or those trying to limit total food intake may consume a diet closer to 1500 Calories. A 1500-Calorie diet would contain between 8 ¼ to 14 ½ teaspoons of fat to be within the recommendations.

4 Eating well with Canada’s Food Guide
Four food groups Vegetables and Fruit Grain Products Milk and Alternatives Meat and Alternatives To achieve the recommended amount of fat in a healthy diet, it is important to choose a variety of foods from all 4 food groups. The fat we eat comes from each of the four food groups as well as other foods. Within each food group there are many lower-fat options. In 2007 the Food Guide was revised with key messages to select the lower-fat options more often than the higher-fat choices within a food group. A high-fat diet increases your risk of: weight gain or obesity, and heart disease.

5 What Amount of Food do You Need?
The Recommended Number of Food Guide Servings chart shows how much food you need from each of the four food groups every day. The recommendations are based on your age and gender. For example, a woman aged years needs: 7-8 Food Guide Servings of Vegetables and Fruit Choose vegetables or fruit prepared with little or no fat 6-7 Food Guide Servings of Grain Products Choose grain products that are lower in fat 2 Food Guide Servings of Milk and Alternatives Drink skim, 1% or 2% milk; choose yogurts that are 2% MF or less 2 Food Guide Servings of Meat and Alternatives Select lean meats prepared with little or no fat

6 Where is fat found? 1. Easy to see Fat added to foods
Butter, margarine, oil Fat on the outside of foods Chicken skin, outside trim on meat 2. Hidden Ingredient Snack foods, baked products, desserts Added in cooking Fried foods, cream soups, sauces To be able to reduce our fat intake, we need to know where the fat is in our diets. Sometimes fat is easy to spot: In the butter, oil, margarine we add to foods or use in cooking foods; The fat on the outside of foods like the skin on chicken and the trim on meat – these are easily removed. Sometimes fat is hidden: We use fat as ingredients in foods – in recipes, in baked goods; We use fat to cook foods – this fat gets absorbed into foods and increases the fat content as seen in fried foods.

7 Types of Fat All fat-containing foods have a mixture of different fats
Types of fats include: Polyunsaturated fats (PUFA) Monounsaturated fats (MUFA) Saturated fats (SFA) Trans fats (TFA) Fat is made up of different fatty acids — the building blocks of fat. All fat-containing food has a mixture of these different fatty acids. Usually the type of fat that is in greatest quantity determines how that food is identified. For example, olive oil has more monounsaturated fat than the other fats. The main types of fat are polyunsaturated fat, monounsaturated fat, and saturated fat. We will also talk about trans fats since they are present in a number of foods and are linked to heart disease. However, recently, the food industry has been trying to decrease the amount of trans fat in their products.

8 Polyunsaturated Fats Some are “essential” because the body cannot make them: Omega-3 fats can help decrease the risk of heart disease Omega-3 fats are found in fish, flaxseed and omega-3 eggs Other foods with PUFA are vegetable oils (corn, soybean, sunflower), margarines made with vegetable oils, walnuts, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds Polyunsaturated fats are an important part of our diet. Some are essential because our body cannot make them like omega-3 fats, which have been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease. Omega-3 fats are found in fish such as salmon, mackerel, albacore tuna, herring and halibut, flaxseed and products with added omega-3 (e.g., eggs, bread, pork). Other sources of PUFA include vegetable oils (corn, soybean, sunflower), margarines made with vegetable oils, walnuts, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, and flaxseed. The Food Guide recommends a small amount (30-45 mL or 6-9 tsp) of unsaturated fat each day. Notes to leader: These foods are listed in the “Canadian Nutrient File”. Their fat profile indicates that the level of PUFA is higher than the other types of fat.

9 Monounsaturated Fats Considered “good” fats because they help decrease the risk of heart disease Examples: Olive oil, canola oil, margarine made with canola, peanuts, nuts (almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, pecans) Like polyunsaturated fats, monounsaturated fats are considered “good” fats because they help decrease the risk of heart disease. Foods that are sources of monounsaturated fats include olive oil, canola oil, margarine made with canola, peanuts (and peanut butter), nuts (almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, pistachios, pecans), and avocados. Interestingly, many animal products are identified as primarily sources of saturated fats; however, many cuts of meat, including beef, pork, chicken and fish are higher in monounsaturated fat than saturated fat. For example, lean beef has about 51% monounsaturated fat, 45% saturated fat and 4% polyunsaturated fat. Note to leaders: Source of information is the “Canadian Nutrient File”.

10 Saturated Fats Diets high in saturated fats can increase the risk of heart disease Examples: butter, cakes and pastries, chocolate bars, coconut, coffee whitener are all high in saturated fat Other sources of saturated fat include untrimmed meat and higher fat dairy products (e.g., cheese, cream) A high intake of total fat and saturated fat has been associated with an increased risk of heart disease. Sources: Food items such as butter, cakes and pastries, chocolate bars, coconut, coffee whitener are all sources of saturated fat. Untrimmed meat and higher fat dairy products are also sources of saturated fat in our diets. Note to leaders Many animal products are identified as primarily sources of saturated fats. If the meat is untrimmed then the amount of saturated fat is higher than the other fats. However, when trimmed, many cuts of meat, including beef, pork, chicken and fish are lower in total and saturated fat, and higher in monounsaturated fat. For example, lean beef has about 51% monounsaturated fat, 45% saturated fat and 4% polyunsaturated fat. In addition, one-third of the saturated fat in beef is stearic acid, which does not affect blood cholesterol. Source of information is the “Canadian Nutrient File”.

11 Trans Fats Are made from hydrogenation
This makes oils more firm. Act like saturated fats in the body Most found in commercially prepared foods some French fries, potato chips, donuts, cookies, crackers, cereals, shortening, muffins, pizza crusts, buns, cakes Most trans fats are produced through the processing of other polyunsaturated fats – this is called hydrogenation. Hydrogenation makes the vegetable oil more stable and firm – this results in products that are more suitable than liquid oils for cooking and baking. The problem with these trans fat is that they act like saturated fat increasing the risk of heart disease. The Nutrition Facts Table identifies the amount of trans fat in the packaged product. Most are found in commercially prepared foods – some brands of French fries, potato chips, donuts, cookies, crackers, cereals, shortening, muffins, pizza crusts, hamburger buns, cakes (Reference: Heart Headlines, Volume 7(2), Summer Many companies are changing their recipes to decrease or eliminate the trans fat in their foods. Note to leaders Trans fats are produced from partial hydrogenation. Oils that are fully hydrogenated are saturated fats and do not contain trans fats. Unfortunately, both partially hydrogenated oils and fully hydrogenated oils are often listed the same way on labels – as hydrogenated oils.

12 Naturally Occurring Trans Fats
Found in dairy and meat products Some are not the same as those found in processed foods Two types include: Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) may reduce risk of cancer and heart disease. Trans vaccenic acid (TVA) may reduce risk of heart disease converted to CLA in body In addition to trans fats produced through hydrogenation, there is a small amount of naturally occurring trans fats found in foods from ruminant animals (beef, lamb, dairy products). These trans fats do not appear to have the same effect on the risk of heart disease as partially hydrogenated fat. Specifically, two naturally occurring trans fat—conjugated linoleic acid or CLA and trans vaccenic acid (TVA)—may actually be beneficial. Research using animals (like mice or rats) has shown that CLA may be beneficial in reducing the risk of cancer or and TVA may reduce the risk of heart disease. A lot more research is needed to determine whether these fats have any benefit for people. Note to leaders: When products have the Nutrition Facts on their labels, the trans fat listed on the label of milk products or meat products is the naturally occurring trans fat only, but does not include the CLA in these foods. There are no trans fats in milk and beef from hydrogenation.

13 Foods Have a Mixture of Fats
All fat-containing foods are a mixture of different types of fat. This slide shows 4 examples of fats – showing the mixture of fats. Fats are classified based on the one that is in the greatest quantity. For example, corn oil is almost 60% polyunsaturated fat, but it also has 40% of other fats. Butter, olive oil and corn oil do not contain trans fats, but may have small amounts of other fat compounds not measured in the three main types of fat. The hard margarine (or stick margarine) contains partially hydrogenated oil. As a result, it has about 20% trans fat.

14 Quiz on Fats Why is fat important? Fat is important because:
Fat is a nutrient It is a source of energy It adds taste and texture to food It helps us feel full longer It helps us absorb fat-soluble vitamins Here is the first of three questions to review some of the information covered in this presentation. Why is fat important? Fat is important because: • Fat is a nutrient it is a source of energy, it adds taste and texture to food It helps us feel full longer it helps us absorb fat-soluble vitamins.

15 Quiz on Fats Give three examples of foods that contain hidden fats.
Examples include: Snack foods Fried foods Cream soups Desserts The second question is asking you to give three examples of foods with hidden fats. Examples of foods that have hidden fats include: Snack foods such as potato chips, peanuts, granola bars, chocolate bars Fried foods – French fries, fried chicken or fish, any deep-fried food, doughnuts Cream soups Desserts – pies, some cakes (e.g. cheesecake, mouse, cakes with whipped cream, cakes with a lot of oil or butter in the recipe), muffins, cream cookies, etc.

16 Quiz on Fats How much total fat is recommended in our diets?
It is recommended that we have between 20 to 35% of our Calories from fat. It is recommended that we have between 20 to 35% of our Calories from fat. The third question is how much total fat is recommended in our diets. It is recommended that we have between 20 and 35% of our Calories from fat. For a 2000-Calorie diet, that would be between grams of fat.

17 Additional Information
Nutrition Labelling resource: Eating Well with Canada’s Food Guide: Nutrition information and activities: Recipes and more nutrition information about beef:


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