Lipid definition: Greek: Lipos = fat
- Lipids are an important component of living cells
- Lipids include fats, oils, waxes, steroids and fatty acids
- Eating too much fat, the wrong type of fat as we know can lead to weight gain
- However, including lipids in the diet is essential to health
What are the function of lipids?
- Energy production and storage
- Insulation and protection
- Digestion and absorption
- Hormone production
- Energy production and storage – the primary role of lipids is to provide energy for muscles.
Fat is energy dense, containing 9 calories per gram and fuels about half the daily energy needs.
2. Insulation and protection – Lipids insulate and protect the body.
Did you know? Tattoos: Injected ink damages the
protective layers allowing ink poisons to enter the body
3. Digestion and absorption – Lipids are required for bile production in the liver. Bile is necessary for digestion of dietary fats and fat-soluble vitamins.
4. Hormone production – Cholesterol is a type of lipid needed to produce important hormones in the body.
Oestrogen, testosterone, progesterone and the active form of vitamin D are all formed from cholesterol.
- Hydrogenation describes the chemical saturation of unsaturated fats.
- Involves reacting the oil with hydrogen gas using a catalyst such as nickel.
- This creates trans-fats.
Effects on health
• Increased risk of heart disease
• Increased risk of blood clots forming
• Refined vegetable oils, fried, processed, fast food, frozen dinners, margarines, peanut butter, ice-cream, cakes, biscuits, pastries, crisps.
- Fruit – avocado, olives.
- Seeds – chia, flax, sunflower,
- pumpkin, hemp, seed butters.
- Seed oils: flax oil, chia oil,
- hemp oil, sunflower oil, olive oil.
- Ensure oils are cold pressed.
- Nuts – almonds, cashews,
- brazil nuts, walnuts, nut butter.
- Other – organic raw dairy, coconut.
- Oily fish – salmon, mackerel, sardines, anchovies.
Fats- cooking oils
Saturated fats (the most stable):
- Coconut oil, ghee/butter
- Olive oil, avocado oil, rapeseed oil
- (canola), peanut oil.
Note: Heating oils produces volatile aldehydes. They are associated with cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.
References: College of Naturopathic Medicine