Both olive oil and butter are 100 percent fat. Both have more than 100 calories a tablespoon, but olive oil has less saturated fat and no dietary cholesterol.

Almost all foods contain some form of fat. Fats are organic compounds that are made up of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. Fats belong to a group of substances called lipids.

Lipids are essential macronutrients. Fats are needed for energy production, the absorption and processing of vitamins A, D, E and K, to make calcium available, the conduction of nerve impulses, to form cell membranes and the processing of hormones. Fats also supply your body with an essential fatty acid and help keep our skin and hair healthy.

Three essential fatty acids cannot be synthesized this way and must be incorporated in the diet. These are linoleic acid, linolenic acid and arachidonic acid. All three are unsaturated fats.

Fat provides us with our most concentrated form of energy. The energy content of fat is 9 kcal/gram, which is more than twice as great as carbohydrates and proteins (4 kcal/gram). A layer of fat under the skin is also important for insulating the body to protect us from temperature extremes. The fat around the internal organs cushions and protects.

Too much fat storage leads to too much body fat (adipose tissue) and obesity. The body can store excess fat in the abdomen, which is called omental fat, and under the skin, which is called subcutaneous. The body also stores excess fat in blood vessels and within organs, where it can block blood flow and damage the organs, often with devastating results. Half of the dry weight of the brain is fat.

Butter is made from the fat and protein solids from milk. Most butter you buy at the supermarket comes from cow’s milk. Butter can also be made from the milk of sheep, goats, buffalo and other mammals.

Butter’s color can range between white and pale yellow. This characteristic depends on the time of the year and the diet of the animal that produced the milk. Commercial butters are sometimes colored so that the butter will remain uniform in color all year round. Butter is sold as a solid substance, often in bricks of specific weight for easy measuring. It is also found as a whipped spread.

Butter in the supermarket is marked as salted or unsalted. Most commercial butter has a butterfat content of about 80 percent. When cooking and baking, unsalted butter is favored because the amount of salt is not regulated. It’s better if you control how much you salt you add.

Olive oil is a fat obtained from the olive, which is a tree-growing fruit. The olive tree was once only native to the Mediterranean, but is now grown throughout the world.

Olive oil will range from light yellow to deep golden to greenish in color.

Once the olives have ripeness, they are harvested from the trees and pressed. This pressing extracts the oil. It can take more than 1,000 olives to produce one liter of olive oil.

There are numerous types of olive oil. Oils labeled “virgin,” “extra virgin” or “premium extra virgin” refers to how little the oil has been processed. Olive oil can also vary by the region in which it was produced. Your olive oil could be Spanish, French or Greek.

Fats can be classified into four categories: Saturated fats, Trans fats, Polyunsaturated fats and Monounsaturated fats. All the fats we eat are combinations of saturated, polyunsaturated and unsaturated fatty acids. Fats with single bonds are called saturated because they are “saturated” with as many hydrogen atoms as they can carry. Fats with only one double bond are called mono-unsaturated. Fats with more than one double bond are called poly-unsaturated.

Fats and oils are extremely important to your diet. Evidence indicates that a diet high in fat is harmful. Evidence also indicates that mono and polyunsaturated fats are less harmful than saturated ones, except that trans unsaturated fats may be worse than saturated fats. You should choose the fats you use carefully. You should avoid all processed foods containing hydrogenated fats and polyunsaturated oils. You should use vegetable oils like extra virgin olive oil. Good quality butter can be used.

All oils are a combination of saturated, unsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. So which one should you avoid? Saturated fats should only be 10 percent of your total caloric intake. That means if you take in 1,200 calories, only 120 of those calories should be saturated fat calories. That’s only 14 grams of saturated fat daily. Two teaspoons of olive oil contains about 2 grams of saturated fat. The same amount of butter has 6 grams of saturated fat.

Oils are another source of fat. All oils are a combination of saturated, unsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Saturated fats should only be 10 percent of your total caloric intake. That means if you take in 1,200 calories, only 120 of those calories should be saturated fat calories. Two teaspoons of olive oil contains about 2 grams of saturated fat. The same amount of butter has 6 grams of saturated fat. Canola oil and olive oil are the best oils for cooking. You should avoid hydrogenated vegetable oils.

Saturated fats should only be 10 percent of your total caloric intake. That means if you take in 1,200 calories, only 120 of those calories should be saturated fat calories. Children under two years of age should not be on a low fat diet because cholesterol and fat are thought to be important nutrients for their brain development. It is very unhealthy for an athlete, or anyone to fall below 10 percent of calories from fat.

Two teaspoons of olive oil contains about 2 grams of saturated fat. The same amount of butter has 6 grams of saturated fat. You want to keep your total caloric intake of fat to 15 to 20 percent. Canola oil and olive oil are the best oils for cooking. You should reduce both trans and saturated fats in your diet as much as possible and replace them with monounsaturated fats. You should avoid hydrogenated vegetable oils. You should choose liquid vegetable oils or a soft tub margarine that contains little or no trans fats.

You should try to reduce intake of commercially fried foods, commercially prepared baked goods, snack foods, and processed foods, including fast foods. When buy foods containing hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils choose products that list the hydrogenated oils near the end of the ingredient list or not at all. Try never to use margarine. If you do, look for margarine with no more than 2 grams of saturated fat per tablespoon and a liquid vegetable oil as the first ingredient. Try to find margarine labeled “trans-fat free”.

Butter is best used when cooking cakes and shortbreads. Pie crust, scones and other flaky pastries are going to work best with the flavor and texture of cold butter. Unsalted butter will give candies better flavor and texture.

Olive oil is best used when you’re looking to eat healthier. Olive oil has significantly less saturated fat than butter. It is better for frying. The burn point of olive oil is about 410 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter’s burns at about 300 degrees. You can also use olive oil if you’re making a marinade. Olive oil will add a nutty flavor to your dish when ever you use it.

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