No, it’s not a curse word or acronym for something dirty, but for some, it can be considered a bad word. It’s a fat. There, I’ve said it: the “F” word… Hear me out, though. MUFA isn’t just any fat. It’s a GOOD fat. It’s the kind of fat you want to get familiar with. The acronym stands for monounsaturated fatty acid.
Are all fats equal? Absolutely not, and that’s why I want to inform you on this essential nutrient! Monounsaturated fats (MUFAs) are a type of heart-healthy, disease-fighting "good" fat that should be part of any healthy eating plan.
Used responsibly and in moderation, monounsaturated fats can help reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood and lower your risk of heart disease and stroke. What’s more is that they also provide nutrients to help develop and maintain your body’s cells. And, since your brain is comprised of about 60% fat (no I’m not calling you fat-head), early research indicates that consuming this type of fat might help preserve cognitive thinking and reduce or postpone the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.
While it is widely known that trans fats and saturated fats (the kinds found in processed foods and fast foods) are a major contributor to heart disease, monounsaturated fats not only respond positively with regard to bodily health and function, they are also typically high in vitamin E (a powerful antioxidant vitamin most of us need more of).
While most foods contain a combination of different fats, examples of foods high in monounsaturated fats would include; vegetable oils such as olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil, sunflower oil and sesame oil. You can also find it in whole foods such as avocados, peanut butter, and many nuts and seeds.
That said, you must remember: a fat is still a fat when it comes to calories. So, use them in moderation if you want to get or maintain a trim waistline. You just want to make sure that the majority of your fat calories come from polyunsaturated fats instead of foods that contain saturated fats and/or Trans fats. Good news: Recent studies show that MUFAs can even help reduce belly fat!
If you need help sorting through the best way to put your nutrition together, please remember that I am here to help. Just call, email, or fill out this form and get started on your very own 6-month journey toward better health!
As always – enjoy your life.
John Aaron Villarreal
Bio: I am a Houston based, male massage therapist and wellness coach specializing in pain management and health programs for individuals over the age of forty. I laugh - a lot. I'm quirky but sincere. And, while I'm not a counselor, I do listen and I do care: Except for the times that I don't. That’s a joke - Did I mention that I like to laugh? Anyway, visit my website, call or email me and let's get together to talk about you, and the many ways to live life better!
The Legal Stuff: I write to inform, inspire and encourage my readers to enjoy all that life has to offer.
The content and information on this site is not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease.
Please consult your physician prior to starting any exercise, diet or wellness program.