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What Is an Essential Fat?

You may have heard that essential fats are an important aspect tomaintaining the health of your body. But what exactly are they?

Basically, there are two truly essential fatty acids, Linoleic and Linolenic. You may have heard of these referred to as Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids.

So, why are they called essential? The term essential in the lifesciences refers to the fact that a nutrient cannot be synthesized by the body. Thus, you must have a dietary or supplemental source to supply your need for these acids.

You probably heard of the 8 essential amino acids. It's the sameidea here but in this case we are referring to fatty acids ratherthan an amino acid.

These fatty acids exist in and are used in every cell of your body. So they are crucial to a cell's health and therefore to our health as people. The good news is that in North America, you generally get enough Omega -6 in your diet. Omega-3 has presented a question mark to researchers. Are we getting enough or not?

Fortunately, you can get Omega-3 from fish and certain nut oils. If you have any doubt at all, you can get Omega three from flax oil,which is in abundant supply at your local health food store.

Don't let the phrase essential fat or essential fatty acid fool you. These are not going to make you gain unwanted weight.

As those of us who truly understand weight loss and gain can tellyou, the key to losing or gaining fat storage from your body centers around the bodies short term energy storage supply.

This article is for information purposes only. It is not meant todiagnose, treat or prevent any disease or condition. Consult yourprimary health care provider if you have or suspect you have anyphysical ailments.

Dave Snape is a health, fitness and wellness enthusiast. His website is


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