Fats have no place in healthy meal plans – at least that’s what the experts would have you believe. In reality, monounsaturated, polyunsaturated and healthy types of saturated fats serve important functions in the body so that it stays in good condition. Fat is only a problem when the bulk of it comes from hydrogenated oils and processed food sources.

Eat Fish, Raw Nuts and Seeds Regularly

If you don’t eat fish on a regular basis, you don’t know what you’re missing. Fish is the richest source of a polyunsaturated fat known as omega-3. Omega-3 is important for the nervous system and brain to function optimally.

The American Heart Association recommends eating fatty fish at least two times a week because the omega-3 found in seafood can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, lower blood pressure and slow the growth of atherosclerotic plaque. Examples of fatty fish include:

  • anchovies
  • herring
  • mackerel
  • lake trout
  • albacore tuna
  • salmon
  • sardines
  • pilchards
  • bluefish
  • Not only is omega-3 great for heart and artery health, it has been shown to reduce inflammation in the body and relieve pain from conditions like arthritis and cystitis. Omega-3 also eases the symptoms of depression, bipolar disorder and psychosis.

    Unlike other fats, your body cannot make omega-3. This is why it’s important to get this nutrient from the foods you eat. If fish is not your thing, don’t worry. You can get omega-3 from flaxseeds, walnuts, pecans, macadamia nuts and almonds. If you feel like you can’t get enough omega-3 to meet your dietary needs, consider taking supplements to help.

    Most nuts and seeds are rich in monounsaturated fat. Studies show that eating foods rich in this type of fat can improve cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease. If you have diabetes, loading your diet with nuts and seeds can help control your blood sugar levels.

    Eat More Avocados, Olive Oil and Coconut Oil

    Make avocados and olive oil a regular part of your diet. These foods are not only yummy; they’re rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fat. Adding more of these foods to your diet is not hard. Instead of spreading margarine on your vegetables, coat them in olive oil or make a fresh avocado dip for them.

    Instead of grilling and sautéing your veggies and meats in butter or vegetable oil, use olive oil. You can also mix olive oil with apple cider vinegar or lemon juice to make a delicious dressing to drizzle over your leafy greens.

    The body needs saturated fat to protect the organs, help with nutrient absorption and assist with proper cell functioning. Coconut oil was once believed to be a no, no in a diet because it contains mostly saturated fat. Now, coconut oil is recognized as one of the healthiest sources of saturated fat. You can add coconut oil in your diet by using it to fry some of your favorite foods.

    Examples of Healthy Meals That Include Fat

    Sometimes it can be difficult to find ways to implement a healthy source of fat in each meal. Here are a few examples of breakfast, lunch and dinner ideas that contain fat.

  • Turkey sausage, steamed mushrooms and spinach topped with coconut oil.
  • Oatmeal topped with walnuts, cinnamon and blueberries.
  • Beef burger, spinach, cucumbers, cauliflower and celery salad with olive oil and apple cider vinegar dressing.
  • Broiled salmon, baked potato, green beans, and a green salad topped with vinegar and olive oil dressing.
  • Grilled shrimp, avocado, cooked lentils and raw veggies with olive oil.
  • Regardless of what you’ve heard, fats are essential in healthy meal plans. Eat nuts, seeds, avocados, olive oil, coconut oil and fish regularly to get all the nutritional benefits these fats have to offer.

    Author's Bio: 

    A healthy meal plans can help you drop those unwanted pounds. Learn how to lose weight and keep it off at www.thedietsolutionprogram.com