With the increasing demands of work, school and other outside activities, it can often be difficult to fit clean and healthy meals into our diets. Unfortunately, thanks to the nutritional content of fast and processed foods, this generally means higher amounts of saturated fat. According to the American Heart Association, saturated fats have the ability to raise blood cholesterol, which can lead to a number of health risks, including coronary heart disease, heart attack and stroke. Considering this, it is necessary to include low-saturated-fat foods into your diet as often as possible while avoiding those high in saturated fat.
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Meat products generally contain high amounts of saturated fat. However, with the right meat choices, you can use this food source as a healthy way to keep your saturated fat count low. When choosing low-saturated fat meat products, it is necessary to read the pack carefully to determine the fat content. As far as chicken and fish are concerned, most cuts you can buy will be fairly lean. Beef and pork, on the other hand, usually contain a higher fat content. Stick to 90 percent lean cuts and above. Try your best to avoid processed meats, bacon, hot dogs and fried food.
Fruits and Vegetables
The majority of both fruits and vegetables contain very low amounts of saturated fat. Instead, they are packed with healthy antioxidants and nutrients. Nearly all varieties of fruits and vegetables are solid low-saturated fat choices, including canned, frozen and dried. However, canned fruits packed in syrup should be avoided if possible. In addition, steer clear of vegetables cooked in excessive amounts of sauce and butter, as both of these items are generally high in saturated fat.
Dairy products provide another healthy, low-saturated fat content option. Stick to milk products under 1 percent fat. This means you're going to have to abandon the 2 percent fat milk and whole milk. Avoid hard cheese such as cheddar, Swiss and American, and try to consume only low-fat or skim cheese products. Both yogurt and frozen yogurt are also low in saturated fat, but ice cream and whipped cream should be left out.
Grains cover all sorts of bread, cereal, pasta, rice and beans. To avoid high saturated fat content, stick to whole wheat or multi-grain sources of these products. Oatmeal, sweet potatoes and dried beans are also included in this category. Limit consumption of granola cereals and most store-bought muffins, pancakes and biscuits. The highest saturated fat grains sources include baked goods such as pastries, store-bought crackers and products that contain lard or butter or are made with hydrogenated oils.