You do not want to totally eliminate all fats from your diet, because healthy fats are a necessity for a healthy diet. Replacing bad fats with good fats will drastically reduce intake of saturated fats and trans fats in your body. All fats, good or bad, are very high in calories. Therefore, make sure to consume healthy fats in moderation. The following is a list of top 10 tips to reduce the intake of saturated fats and increase the intake of unsaturated fats:
1. Read food labels – You can find useful information from reading the nutrition facts on food labels. Avoid as much trans fats as possible. If a food label says it is trans fat free, if it shows “partially hydrogenated oil” towards the top of the ingredients list, it may not be totally free of trans fats. You should also limit the amount of fast foods you eat.
2. Eat less red meat – Cut back on read meats (beef, lamb, pork) and eat more fatty fish at least twice a week. Include more chicken (white meat with no skin) and turkey in your diet. If you do eat red meat, use lean cuts.
3. Cooking methods – Baking, broiling grilling, stir-frying or steaming are healthier cooking methods than frying. When baking use vegetable or canola oil. If you choose to fry your foods, use olive oil instead of butter, margarine or lard.
4. Dressing and marinade substitutions – Store-bought salad dressings and marinades are usually high in saturated fat and trans fats. Using olive oil, flaxseed oil or sesame oil based salad dressings and marinades are a good way to lower unhealthy fats in your salad and marinades and not give up great taste.
5. Avoid deep-fried breaded foods – Avoid deep-fried foods, breaded meats and breaded vegetables whenever possible.
6. Choose low-fat dairy products – Substitute full or whole-fat milk, cheese, yogurt and other dairy foods with lower fat versions.
7. Eat more avocados – Avocados are loaded with brain-healthy and heart-healthy fats and are more filling. Try using them in salads, sandwiches or make guacamole.
8. Nuts – A handful of nuts is a better snack choice than chips or sweets. Nuts can be added to vegetable dishes and salads for a delightfully healthy flavor change.
9. Olives – Another healthy snack choice is olives. They are loaded with healthy monounsaturated fats and are low in calories. They can be added to salads, sandwiches, pizza or made into a spread for dipping.
10. Eggs – Remove the yolk from eggs, use egg substitutes or tofu instead of using whole eggs.
As more and more people are becoming aware and conscious of their health, manufacturers have made great efforts to produce healthier products. In an attempt to help people make healthier food choices, the American Heart Association has endorsed numerous products promoting better health. Consuming healthy fats for a healthy heart is a good way to ensure a healthy diet and healthy lifestyle. For more information on healthy diets, go to Healthy Diet Guidelines.