Monounsaturated fats (MUFAs)
Unsaturated fats are those that have double bonds in their chemical structure. Monounsaturated fatty acids, or MUFAs, are a type of unsaturated fat. “Mono,” meaning one, signifies that monounsaturated fats have only one double bond.
There are many different types of MUFAs. Oleic acid is the most common type, comprising around 90% of those found in the diet. Other MUFAs include palmitoleic acid and vaccenic acid. Oils that contain monounsaturated fats are typically liquid at room temperature but start to turn solid when chilled. Olive oil is an example of a type of oil that contains monounsaturated fats.
Many foods are high in MUFAs, but most consist of a combination of different fats. There are very few foods that contain only one type of fat. For example, olive oil is very high in MUFAs and other types of fat. Monounsaturated fats, in particular, have been shown to have a number of health benefits.
Oleic acid, which is the primary type of fat in olive oil, has been found to have multiple positive effercts on cardiovascular health : it reduces the susceptibility of LDL to oxidation, reduces blood coagulation and improves blood-vessel function. Additionally monounsaturated fats compliment very well saturated fats as all cell membranes are made-up of about 20 percent monounsaturated fats and the brain cells have the most!!
Prefer olive oil and olives as your main sources of your getting your mono-unsaturated fats since it is very low in omega-6 fats. Nuts are not very balanced in this respect. Regarding cooking, olive oil has a moderate smoking point so I would not recommend using for cooking as there are better options such as ghee.
- Eat your olive oil!!