Although we have a tendency to consider lipids bad, they are necessary for human life. Their functions include the following:
â¢ Fats are the most concentrated form of energy. They provide nine calories for every gram burned, which is more than twice the amount of energy per gram of carbohydrate.
â¢ Adipose (fat) tissue holds organs in place, and the sub cutaneous (below the skin) layer of fat provides insulation from the cold and maintains body temperature.
â¢ Fat spares the B vitamin thiamine. Thiamine is required when using carbohydrate for energy.
â¢ Fat spares protein. When fat is present, the body does not have to burn protein for fuel.
â¢ Fat helps in the absorption and transport of the fat soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K.
â¢ Lipids slow the rate at which foods leave the stomach. This means that the carbohydrate also present is not released all at once, keeping insulin and blood sugar levels even. Fat decreases the appetite, giving the feeling of satiety.
â¢ Fat makes foods more palatable.
â¢ Lipids provide the building blocks from which sterols,
prostaglandins, thromboxanes, prostacyclins, and cell membranes are made.