Dietary fats

Dietary fats

Fats are important for good health and proper functioning of the body. They are an important source of energy, they enhance the absorption of fat soluble vitamins, and build all our cell membranes. Our brains are mainly made of fats.

A balanced intake of fats is important, as too little or too much, or the wrong type of fat, may negatively affect our health. Adults should get a recommended 20-35% of their energy intake from fat. Less than 10% should come from saturated fat, and trans-fats should be avoided.

For us all

For health professionals

What are saturated fats and are they bad for our heart?

28 September 2020

Saturated fat is one of the most hotly debated areas in nutrition. This debate has led to contradictory media headlines about how they affect our health, harming the trust in public health messages aimed at reducing our intake. This article will explain what saturated fats are and in which foods they are found, what the evidence says about reducing our intake and provides lifestyle tips for improving heart health.  

Dietary fats (Infographic)

09 July 2020

This infographic highlights why we need fat, the different types of fat, the fat found in common foods, and the health effects of each type.

The importance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids

27 March 2019

The beneficial effects of consuming omega-3 fatty acids are well publicised, but omega-6 fatty acids feature far less in the news. So what are fatty acids and why is it important that we get the balance right?

Facts about Fats

22 September 2015

Fats are important for good health and proper functioning of the body. They are a source of energy, essential fats and enhance the absorption of fat soluble vitamins. However, too much fat and/or the wrong type of fat may negatively affect our health.

Highlights from the 11th Biennial congress of the international society for the study of fatty acids and lipids (ISSFAL) 2014

16 March 2015

In June 2014, the 11th ISSFAL Biennial Congress took place in Stockholm, Sweden. This meeting provided a unique occasion for the exchange of scientific...

The Functions of Fats in the Body

13 February 2015

This review is dedicated to the current advances in nutrition science on the relation between dietary fat consumption and health outcomes, including obesity and cardiovascular disease. 

Omega-6 fatty acids associated with lower risks of heart disease and death

10 February 2015

Two international groups of researchers have independently studied the effects of omega-6 fatty acids on the risks of death and coronary heart disease...

Olive oil: How is it produced? (Infographic)

12 October 2014

From pressing to refining, see how olive oil is produced through all the various stages.

Functions, Classification And Characteristics Of Fats

25 March 2014

What are dietary fats? Read about the classification of fats, their different characteristics, and functions in both, the body and food technology.

How to choose your culinary oil

12 February 2014

There is an increasing variety of vegetable oils for cooking and food preparation. How do you decide which one to use? Considerations include taste, functional properties of the oil, cost, and the health impact...

Palm oil (Q&A)

20 September 2013

Palm oil is an edible vegetable oil produced from the pulp of the fruits of palms and that is solid at room temperature. 

Trans fats and cardiovascular health: What is the current situation?

08 June 2013

Dutch researchers from the department of Health Sciences and the EMGO Institute for Health Care Research of VU University, in Amsterdam, and the Division of Human Nutrition of Wageningen...

Algal oil as a possible source of omega-3 fatty acid DHA to improve blood lipids in people without heart disease

30 October 2012

Compared to fish oil, algal oil maybe an equally effective yet more sustainable source of omega-3 fatty acids.

Eating any food sources of omega-3 fats may be beneficial for health

07 December 2011

Eating plant sources of omega-3 fatty acids may be as beneficial for health as eating fish sources of omega-3 fatty acids, suggests a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition...

Omega-3 fatty acids: where to find them?

03 July 2003

Although no single food alone can make a person healthy, eating more fish is one way that most of us can help improve our diets—and our health. Many of the studies about beneficial omega-3 fatty acids focus on fish as the primary source. Salmon, sardines, tuna and even shellfish are rich in omega-3 fatty acid content, but increasing your consumption of all types of fish and seafood is recommended.