Here is a true-or-false quiz from the American Heart Association to test your knowledge about dietary fats and your health:
1. A three-ounce portion of meat is about the same size as a compact disc.
2. When the desire for high-fat desserts overtakes you, eat fruit and try to forget the urge for sweets.
3. If a food product label says "no cholesterol," then you can feel safe eating it.
4. Even if your blood cholesterol is in the desirable range (less than 200 mg/dl), it's smart to have it checked once every five years.
5. It's okay to eat all the polyunsaturated fat you want.
6. Non-dairy creamers are low in fat.
7. Skim milk is best for most adults but not for babies.
8. Lowering your blood cholesterol from 250 to 200 mg/dl may reduce your risk of heart attack death by 40 percent.
9. Saturated fat is found only in products of animal origin.
Answers to food quiz
1. False. Same size as a deck of cards.
2. False. You may eat a small serving or share it with a dining partner. Occasional sweets are okay in moderation in proportion to a well-balanced diet.
3. False. A product may not contain cholesterol but may contain saturated fat, and saturated fat raises blood cholesterol. Read the label carefully for the kind of fat listed.
4. True. This is what the American Heart Association recommends.
5. False. Polyunsaturated fat can decrease blood cholesterol, but it's not known whether large amounts of polyunsaturated fat are safe. The AHA recommends an intake of up to 10 percent of your total calories.
6. False. Non-dairy creamers are loaded with saturated fat. Instead, opt for 2 percent milk or skim milk.
7. True. Skim milk is best for adults, but babies need the fat in breast milk formula or whole milk to grow properly at least until age 2.
8. True. For every 1 percent your blood cholesterol is lowered, your risk of heart attack death may be reduced by 2 percent.
9. False. Saturated fat is also found in vegetable sources. Coconut and palm kernel oil are particularly high in saturated fat. Cholesterol is found only in products of animal origin.