Fat Carbon Chain Length
Another point to consider about saturated fats is the length of the carbon chains found in them.
Fats are categorized by carbon chain length as either short-chain, medium-chain, long-chain or very-long-chain fatty acids. The shorter the chain, the easier it is for your metabolism to handle. This only applies when looking at saturated fats.
Many reports have shown how saturated long-chain fats (and very-long-chain fats) are difficult for our metabolism and if consumed in high quantities, these fats put pressure on the liver. The liver then decides to store this in bodily fat for later processing, which of course does not happen if saturated long-chain fats are consumed non-stop in excess, leading to obesity and more.
Coconut oil contains saturated medium-chain fatty acids, which is another reason why it does not appear to increase weight gain and actually aids in weight loss. MCT oil is another saturated fat that is healthy and consists only of medium-chain fatty acids.
Trans Fats & Hydrogenation
Trans fats came into being after the first hydrogenated oil was born. Hydrogenated oils are oils which have extra hydrogen forced into them, making them far more concentrated in hydrogen pairs than saturated fats.
Trans fats, aka hydrogenated vegetable oils, are incredibly unhealthy for us. These fats do not metabolize in the body like other fats do. Instead they glycate, forming deposits that block your arteries and create many of the problems first attributed solely to saturated fat.
Furthermore, trans fats raise ‘bad’ cholesterol, lower ‘good cholesterol, cause insulin resistance, and increase inflammation in the body. The worst part about trans fats is that it doesn’t matter if you consume them in tiny amounts, they’re still going to ruin your health. In other words, there is no such thing as moderation with these nasty man-made oils.
Hydrogenated oils are still endorsed by manufacturers regardless of human health, because doing so increases the life span of the oils and can turn them into solid fats.
The fast food industry and many restaurants also enjoys cooking using hydrogenated vegetable oils, because they can endure repeated heating without breaking down or losing flavor. Deep frying food is not that healthy in the first place, but deep frying food in hydrogenated oils is a speedy way to getting fat or attaining poor heart health.
Last modified: September 22, 2022