Brought to you by the Department of Kinesiology and Health at Georgia State University.

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    This page is meant to be a general guide to nutrition for the promotion of  health and fitness.  This information on this page is not meant to give specific individual dietary recommendations but general guidelines for a healthy diet.


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    Fat is a valuable metabolic fuel for muscle activity during longer durations of endurance exercise at moderate intensity levels. Fat also protects vital organs in the body and insulates. In addition, fat transports fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K. One gram of fat provides 9 kcal and one pound of fat contributes approximately 3500 kcal.

    Today, many people are concerned with the amount of fat in their diets. Diets that are high in fat tend to increase the risk of obesity, heart disease and some types of cancer. Therefore, it is recommended that fat intake should not exceed 30% of daily calories.

    The fats found in both the body and food are cholesterol and triglycerides. The cholesterol in your blood comes from two sources: your own body, made primarily by the liver, and dietary cholesterol from the foods you eat. Dietary cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance found in foods of animal origin (dairy products, egg yolks, meats, poultry and seafood). Cholesterol is not found in plants or plant products. The National Cholesterol Education Program considers a blood cholesterol level of less than 200 mg/dl desirable, 200 to 239 mg/dl is considered borderline high, and levels of 240 mg/dl or greater are considered high.

    Triglycerides are composed of three fatty acids and a glycerol molecule. Fatty acids are either saturated, polyunsaturated or monounsaturated. Saturated fats are usually solid at room temperature and come primarily from animal products like meat, poultry, butter and whole milk. Also, some oils like coconut, palm, and palm kernel oils are high in saturated fats. Dietary saturated fats have the greatest impact on total blood cholesterol. Saturated fat should not exceed 10% of total fat intake.  Polyunsaturated fats are usually liquid at room temperature and are found in vegetable oils such as safflower, sunflower, corn and soybean oils.  Monounsaturated fats are also liquid at room temperature and are found in vegetable oils, such as olive and canola oils.

Sources of fat in this diet are highlighted in red.


1 C cereal  

1 C non-fat milk 

2 slices wheat bread 

1 tsp butter 

4 tsp jam 

1 C juice



3 oz grilled/baked chicken or fish 

1 C pasta w/ marinara sauce 

1/2 C vegetables 

1 C tossed salad w/ 1 Tbs dressing 

1 piece fruit or 1/2 C sliced fruit 

1 C non-fat milk 

1 C juice



3 oz lean meat choice 

1 C rice or potato 

1 dinner roll or slice of wheat bread 

1 tsp butter 

1/2 C vegetables 

1 C frozen yogurt w/ 1/2 C fruit  

1 C non-fat milk

Go to The Exercise and Physical Fitness Home Page

The Exercise and Physical Fitness Web Page is an ongoing project by graduate students in the Master of Science program in Exercise Science in the Department of Kinesiology and Health at Georgia State University. This project was created by J. Andrew Doyle, PhD, and was last modified on: April 27, 1999.