Emily Hanlin mugshotBy Emily Hanlin

Winnebago-Boone Farm Bureau

BOONE COUNTY – We make room for everyone at the table during the holiday season: aunts and uncles, grandmas and grandpas, the young, the old, the rich, the poor.

However, what about the fat? Not the relatives, but the white or yellowish greasy substance kind, of course! The kind that is insoluble in water or cold alcohol but soluble in ether, chloroform, or benzene and used in the making of soap, paints, and other protective coatings and in cooking (USDA). Fats may be more complicated than we realize.

For years, many of us have thought that eating fat is what makes us fat. However, that might no longer be the case. You see, there are options when talking about what kind of fats you should consume in your diet. When it comes down to it, there are pros and cons to all options.

Are corn, soy, and other vegetable oils really better than butter and lard? Well, maybe not! It might be time to forget the idea that low-fat is the best option. It could be time to stop avoiding foods rich in cholesterol and saturated fats.

According to the USDA, omega-3 and omega-6 are “. . . types of polyunsaturated fatty acids. Linolenic acid, the shortest chain omega-3 fatty acid, and linoleic acid, the shortest chain omega-6 fatty acid, are essential fatty acids. This means they cannot be synthesized by the body from other fatty acids and must be obtained from food.”

Since these are such essential fatty acids that are found in products such as butter and lard, food experts may be changing their Soybeanmind about how much of these foods you should consume.

However, that is not to say that we should throw out those corn, soy and vegetable oil. Like I said earlier, there is room for all fats at the table!

According to Samantha Olsonrich at MedicalDaily.com, vegetable oils are “. . . rich in linoleic acid, an essential nutrient that can help lower the risk of heart disease.”

She said that the heart-healthy benefits of vegetable oils were confirmed and that researchers suggest up to four tablespoons of vegetable oil a day.

Olive oil seems to be a fat that stands alone.

According to Mayo Clinic, olive oils are full of “monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs). MUFAs are actually considered a healthy dietary fat. If your diet replaces saturated and trans fats with unsaturated fats such as MUFAs and polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs), you may gain certain health benefits. MUFAs and PUFAs may help lower your risk of heart disease by improving related risk factors.”

There are different benefits accompanied with different kinds of fat.

However, none seem to outshine the other, they are just that: different.

Therefore, all those fatty acids will have a spot at my table this Christmas . . . in moderation of course!

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