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Polyunsaturated Fats: What Are They?

VegetablesPolyunsaturated fats or “right” fats are those that tend to be liquid at room temperature; they are present in good amounts in liquid vegetable, seed and fish oils, and tend to lower the level of blood cholesterol.

Polyunsaturated fats include: modern-day dietetic margarines; all vegetable oils; all fish oils; poultry (without the skin); nuts; whole-grain bread and non-processed cereals; fruits, lean meats; uncreamed cottage cheese; skim milk; peanut butter; all vegetables; low-fat desserts such as gelatin and sherbet.

Because polyunsaturated fats reduce blood-cholesterol levels, they are much preferred over saturated fats. Numerous studies have shown that replacing saturated fat with polyunsaturated cuts the risk of heart disease. The same appears to be true for diabetes. Studies do not show a clear link between polyunsaturated fats and the risk of breast, colorectal, or prostate cancer, however.

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