Saturated fats are solid at room temperature. They are found in animal products like mutton, beef, pork, full-fat dairy products such as cheese, butter, and certain oils like palm oil and coconut oil.
Consuming diet rich in saturated fats leads to weight gain and associated complications. Hence, reducing saturated fat intake and replacing it with healthy fats such as monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) found in nuts and oil seeds will help you in weight loss. It is well established that normal weight and overweight individuals had consistent weight loss on a low-fat diet1.
WHO and US Dietary guidelines recommend to limit the intake of saturated fat to less than 10% of the daily calorie intake. This means if 2000 kcal is your daily calorie intake goal, the calories from fat should not exceed 200 kcal i.e., same as 22 grams of saturated fat. A classic example is one of the most popular chocolates, Cadbury Dairymilk Silk, and it contains 19 grams of saturated fat in one piece (100 grams). You consume more than 80% of the daily limit of saturated fat from just one piece of chocolate, and this percentage would be much higher for people with lower daily calorie intake goals.
As you can guess, foods with high saturated fat content contain many more calories per gram, and eating them makes you exceed your calorie goals even though you are eating a lesser quantity. In addition, you will still feel hungry because of the low amount of food you eat. Hence, you need to be mindful of your food choices and pick food with less saturated fat.
Learning which food contains saturated fat and tracking them is easy using the Hint app. To start with, you can check the nutrition label for the saturated fat content of any food. If you want to learn more, go to the recipes section of the Hint app, and you will find tabs of recipes with low and high saturated fat content. Exclude the foods with a high saturated fat content from your diet and lose weight by eating healthy, not less.
- Institute of Medicine (US) Subcommittee on Military Weight Management. Weight Management: State of the Science and Opportunities for Military Programs. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2004. 4, Weight-Loss and Maintenance Strategies.