Saturated fats are found in animal sources such as meats and dairy products. They are also found in some plan oils, such as coconut, palm and palm kernel, which are often used by manufacturers of packaged baked goods.
Trans fatty acids, often found in baked goods, margarine and hydrogenated oils, can raise blood cholesterol levels. When reading ingredients labels, check to make sure hydrogenated oils are listed second or lower, and the food contains no more than two grams of saturated fat per tablespoon.
While you are checking the label, check the amount of dietary cholesterol listed, if any. Some dietary cholesterol is necessary for good health, but too much can increase your risk of heart disease. Cholesterol is found only in foods of animal origin, such as meat or eggs. It is not found in foods of plant origin, such as vegetables and fruits, unless eggs or other animal products are included in the sauces or breading.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration requires that nutrition information be included on food packages so consumers know what they are eating. When checking these labels, in addition to calorie count and cholesterol amount, check for the serving size, total fat, types of fat and the amount of sodium, fiber and carbohydrates in each serving. Use this information to help you plan your daily menus.
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service-Parker County is offering a two-night workshop called “Healthy Hearts.” The classes are Tuesday, Feb. 26, and March 5 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Parker County Agricultural Services Center. The classes will include lessons, tips and cooking demonstrations for helping individuals live heart healthy.
For more information contact the extension office at 817-598-6168.
Kathy Smith is a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service agent for Parker County. Contact her at (817) 598-6168 or email@example.com.