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Choose Healthy Fats

Updated: Jan 17, 2023

Choose Healthy Fats

Choose foods with healthy fats instead of saturated fat

Benefits of choosing foods with healthy fats

Choosing foods that contain mostly healthy fats instead of foods that contain mostly saturated fat can help lower your cholesterol and risk of heart disease. Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in Canada.

The type of fat you eat over time is more important for health than the total amount of fat you eat.

Foods containing healthy fats:

Seeds, nuts, fatty fish, avocado, vegetable oil, and soft margarine are examples of foods that contain healthy fats. Foods that contain saturated fats are, fatty meats, high fat dairy products, some highly processed foods, and some tropical oils such as palm oil and coconut oil.

How to choose food with healthy fats?

Try different types of fatty fish such as trout, salmon, herring, and mackerel. When preparing foods, use oils with healthy fats such as corn, olive, canola, peanut, sesame, soybean, flaxseed and sunflower. Include small amounts of nuts as a snack. Try nut butters such as peanut, almond, or walnut. Try pumpkin or sunflower seeds. Toast them for a snack or add them to your salad. Make your own salad dressing with canola, olive or flaxseed oil. Add balsamic, rice wine or other vinegars. Flavor with lemon juice, dry or Dijon mustard, garlic and herbs. Limit the amount of foods containing saturated fat, such as cream, higher fat meat, canned coconut milk or cream, some frozen desserts like ice cream, some desserts and bakery products, most deep fried foods, cheeses and foods containing a lot of cheese.


When preparing foods, try to limit the amount of saturated oils and fats like lard, ghee, butter, palm oil, coconut oil, and hard margarine. Choose lean cuts of meat and skinless poultry. Trim off as much of the visible fat as possible. Drain fat from cooked ground meat. Lean or extra lean cuts of meat can include pork loin, chicken breast, sirloin roast or steak, inside and outside round roast, and lean ground poultry.

Some processed foods are made with ingredients that are high in saturated fat. Use the food labels to compare products. Choose those with little to no added saturated fat.

Try these swaps to replace saturated fat with healthy fats:

- On your toast, replace cream cheese with nut butters.

- For dipping, try making your own hummus or tzatziki to replace spinach or artichoke dip.

- On bread or rolls, replace butter with olive oil flavored with balsamic vinegar.

- When you are cooking, replace shortening, lard or hard margarine with oils with healthy fats such as canola, olive and soybean.


Choose Healthy Fats (Practice)

Choose foods with healthy fats instead of saturated fat

A. Give examples of the following:

1. Foods that contain healthy fats.


2. Foods that contain saturated fats.


3. Fatty fish.


4. Oils with healthy fats.


5. Butter that contains healthy fats.


6. Seeds that contain healthy fats.


7. Butter that contains saturated fats.



B. Fill in the blanks with the words from the box:

Trim off – lard - healthy fat – diseases – snack – dressing – almond – pumpkin – ghee - food labels – limit - type – drain – swap – dips – flavor – amount - herbs

1. Choosing foods with healthy fats will save you from heart ----------.

2. The ---------- of fat that you eat is more important than the ---------- of fat that your body gets.

3. One way of choosing food with healthy fat is to ---------- on a small amount of nuts.

4. Have you ever tried cooking with ---------- butter instead of margarine?

5. ---------- seeds can be added to your salad.

6. I make my own salad ---------- with canola oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice and garlic.

7. I’m trying to ---------- the amount of foods containing saturated fats such as cheese cake and ice-cream.

8. ---------- as much fat as possible from meat and poultry.

9. While cooking, ---------- the extra fat in meat and pork.

10. ---------- will help you make healthy choices when buying processed foods.

11. Another word for ---------- is replace.

12. Examples of healthy ---------- are hummus and tzatziki.

13. You can ---------- olive oils with some ----------.

14. ---------- and ---------- are two examples of saturated fats.

15. I’ll start preparing my food using oils with ----------.


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