March 2009 Issue

Focus On The Good Fats: Balancing Omega-3s With Omega-6s

Fat has never had a good reputation, but we know now that certain kinds of fats are worse than others, with trans fats and saturated fats as the bad guys. Monounsaturated fats have emerged as good guys, with polyunsaturated fats in no-man’s land—with good and bad sides. Suggestions that the American diet is too low in omega-3s—a desired poly fat—have been voiced for some time. The flip side is that American diets may be too high in omega-6s—a more ubiquitous poly fat. But while some scientists think a better omega-6:omega-3 ratio would reduce the risk of disease, others argue that harping on the "right" ratio is not the answer to good health. EN examines the research on these two types of polyunsaturated fats to help you make sense of the science.

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