The human body uses fatty acids to do everything from building cell membranes to performing key functions in the brain, eyes, and lungs. The functions of fats include:
Brain – Fats compose 60% of the brain and are essential to brain function, including learning abilities, memory retention and moods. Fats are especially important for pregnant women, since they are integral to fetal brain development.
Cells – Fatty acids help your cells stay moveable and flexible, as well as being responsible for building cell membranes.
Heart – 60% of our heart’s energy comes from burning fats. Specific fats are also used to help keep the heart beating in a regular rhythm.
Nerves – Fats compose the material that insulates and protects the nerves, isolating electrical impulses and speeding their transmission.
Lungs – Lung surfactant, which requires a high concentration of saturated fats, enables the lungs to work and keeps them from collapsing.
Eyes – Fats are essential to eye function.
Digestion – Fats in a meal slow down the digestion process so the body has more time to absorb nutrients. Fats help provide a constant level of energy and also keep the body satiated for longer periods of time. Fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K) can only be absorbed if fat is present.
Organs – Fats cushion and protect your internal organs.
Immune System –Some fats ease inflammation, helping your metabolism and immune system stay healthy and functioning.