We've wholeheartedly embraced the avocado. We've banished "low-fat" versions of normal foods from our pantries. We're truly on board with fat these days, and for good reason: It's a necessary and healthy nutrient. Of course, this has always been declared with the disclaimer that only certain fats are necessary and healthy. Saturated fat is rarely, if ever, included in that category — and now, Shape reports, a recent study's findings will only further vilify it.
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The study, published in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology, found that a diet heavy in saturated fat made rats less sensitive to the dopamine levels in their brains, particularly if their levels were too low. Given the fact that decreased production of dopamine is associated with depression, these findings suggest that a similar diet for humans could have a negative effect on mood. Meanwhile, the rats that were fed a diet including monounsaturated fats experienced no change in their dopamine systems.
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Of course, saturated fat is already associated with unhealthy foods, while monounsaturated fat can be found in fish, nuts, and other foods that we know are great additions to our eating routine. We didn't need another reason why saturated fat is bad for our physical health — now that we know it does nothing good for our mental health, either? This could be the final nail in this bad fat's (probably very greasy) coffin.
Click through to Shape for more on the effects of saturated fats. (Shape)
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