What is oleic acid?

Oleic acid is a long chain fatty acid present in a large part of the fatty foods that we usually eat, in the form of triglycerides, cholesterol esters and / or phospholipids. It is known as oleic acid because a good proportion of the triglycerides in olive oil contain this fatty acid. Some foods that are especially rich in oleic acid are olive oil, canola oil, high oleic sunflower oil, pork fat, avocado, and nuts, among others.

Benefits Some studies, among which the Predimed study stands out, have confirmed that the intake of foods rich in oleic acid is linked to a lower level of incidence of cardiovascular diseases compared to the consumption of other types of fat. These are the main cause of morbidity and mortality in Spain and cause 3 out of 10 deaths per year in Spain. Damages However, despite the benefits it brings to health, we find a clear damage in oleic acid: the energy power of fat. When a person must take care of their diet and lose weight, a high consumption of fatty foods should be avoided, since they provide many calories. According to Francisco Botella, member of the Nutrition Area of ​​the Spanish Society of Endocrinology and Nutrition (SEEN);

“The recommended amount of fat for a healthy diet ranges from 30-35 percent of the total caloric value of the diet.” Within its consumption, the expert recommends that the sources of fat be rich in oleic acid. Does oleic acid help to balance body weight? Contrary to what is believed about the auxiliary function of oleic acid in the balance of body weight, the SEEN expert explains that the balance depends on the energy balance, that is, the result between the amount of energy we ingest and the amount we spend . Therefore, what is important is the amount of energy we ingest, regardless of its source.

If you eat a diet rich in oleic acid that contains more calories than you expend, you will gain more weight. Controversy In recent years, some research that has established a relationship between the consumption of different types of fats and the risk of breast cancer has raised controversy. However, a recently published National Center for Biotechnology Information analysis has shown that there is no direct relationship between breast cancer and the consumption of one type of fat or another. Other uses As Bottle explains, oleic acid is an excellent fatty vehicle that facilitates the absorption and diffusion of other active principles. It is used in the form of liposomes or as base compounds in many cosmetics and dermatological preparations.

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