THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF FATS
Along with carbohydrate and proteins, fats are one of the macronutrients needed in the diet for a normal functioning body. Fat serves both a metabolic and structural function in humans. Fats can be classified depending on their possession or absence of double bonds between their carbon atoms. The two classifications based on these are, saturated and unsaturated.
Fats are useful in production of energy. They are broken down through catabolism in a process called lipolysis. This usually occurs after there is depletion of carbohydrates in the body as they are the primary substrate for the production of energy. Another benefit of fats is that they are needed for digestion of other molecules in the body. Vitamins like A, D, E and K cannot be digested without availability of fats. This is because like fats, they are not water soluble. They are fat soluble and therefore need fat in the digestion in order to undergo digestion, transport and absorption in the body.
Excess fat is usually stored under the skin, as adipose, to provide a back up energy source. Adipose is also useful for the insulating effect it offers to humans against cold weather. High density lipoprotein which is a product of fat is useful in maintaining a healthy cardiovascular system. Adipose tissue is also responsible for the production of hormone such as Leptin, which once produced acts on the brain to signify satiety and prevent further consumption of food.
Sebaceous glands in the skin of the face especially secrete sebum which is made from fat. Sebum is useful for protecting the skin against adverse environmental conditions such a dust. It keeps the skin soft and locks in moisture. This keeps the skin looking young supple and healthy.
Despite the many negative air that is surrounding fat, it has health benefits.