MUFAs stand for monounsaturated fatty acids, but I like to refer to them as the Mediterranean fats. The high MUFA composition in this popular anti-inflammatory diet is partly to thank for its robust health benefits.
To better understand MUFAs, it’s helpful to have a basic understanding of how fatty acids are classified.
MUFAs have been shown to lower total and LDL (lousy) cholesterol, triglycerides (a type of fat in your body) and blood pressure. They’ve also been linked to increased levels of HDL (good) cholesterol and improved blood glucose control. Furthermore, MUFAs help fight chronic and unfavorable inflammation, the foundation for many serious illnesses.
All of these items are good sources of MUFAs:
- Avocado and avocado oil
- Peanuts, peanut butter (all-natural), and peanut oil
- Nuts and seeds, including nut and seed butters
- Olives and olive oil
- Organic canola oil
- Sesame seeds and tahini (sesame paste commonly used in hummus)
- Dark chocolate (yay!)
Bear in mind that all fats contain more calories per gram than protein or carbohydrates so do be mindful of portion control.