The norm of fat per day - For weight loss and weight gain

The norm of fat per day - For weight loss and weight gain

The norm of fat per day - For weight loss and weight gain
The norm of fat per day - For weight loss and weight gain

Calculating the amount of fat is the most difficult question in proper nutrition. In particular, the number of recommendations alone varies considerably less than in the case of protein and carbohydrates - but there are many more misconceptions about fat than with other nutrients.

For example, when you lose weight, you do not need to limit fat as much as possible. On the contrary, high-fat diets usually perform better. As for the set of muscle mass, in this case it is not only the amount of fat that is important, but the composition of the fatty acids contained in them.

Fat in proper nutrition

Fat in proper nutrition

The traditional division of animal and vegetable fats can be misleading. In fact, each fat is a mixture of 5-7 essential fatty acids. Fatty acids themselves are classified by the presence or absence of free bonds in their hydrogen atoms ("saturation").

Hence the division of saturated and unsaturated fats. However, only a rare food product contains only one type of fatty acid - most often all types are present in a particular food, but in different proportions. It is not always easy to emphasize the predominant type.

For example, animal fats tend to have more saturated fatty acids - but unsaturated ("vegetable") fatty acids are also present when they enter the animal's body through diet. There are also vegetable versions of saturated fats such as coconut oil.

Fatty acid chain length

Like carbohydrates, fats can be "simple" or "complex." Fatty acids with up to 15 carbon atoms are absorbed directly from the intestines and used for metabolic purposes - such fatty acids are found in coconut oil (about 80%) and cow's milk (25% of all fats in the composition).

In turn, "complex" polyhydric fats, such as fiber, cannot be absorbed by the human stomach and cannot be absorbed - we are talking about wax and paraffin, which contain chains of hundreds of carbon atoms.

The most common type of dietary fatty acids are those containing 18 carbon atoms - in each type of animal or vegetable fat they are significantly predominant in quantity.

Omega-3, 6 and 9

Omega-3, 6 and 9

If there is a double bond in the chain of fatty acid atoms, then it is called omega-3, 6 or 9 - depending on the order of the bond. The chemical formula of "good" omega-3 fats does not differ from the formula of "bad" omega-6 - the only difference is in the location of the double bond.

But, again, omega-3s are not a special type of fat that can be defined in strict guidelines. There are about 5 different subspecies of omega-3, which differ in their ability to affect the body - for example, they secrete vegetables (flaxseed,  chia seeds  ) and omega-3 animals (salmon).

Trans fat

Besides, it's harder. There are types of fats that can negatively affect metabolism - even in extremely small amounts. For example, the maximum daily intake of trans fats is only 3-4 grams (less than a teaspoon). Exceeding the norm threatens obesity and the development of cardiovascular disease2.

The main source of trans fats are ready-to-eat foods - trans fats appear in vegetable oils during repeated heat treatment. In particular, they are found in margarine and any food that contains margarine as an ingredient.

Refined and unrefined oil

Another misconception is based on the division of vegetable fats into refined and unrefined. In fact, we are talking about additional processes of filtering, bleaching and deodorizing the oil.

Although this changes the physical characteristics (removes odor, changes color, increases temperature resistance), the composition of fatty acids contained in the oil does not change.

Daily fat standards - tables

Daily fat standards - tables

Modern nutritionists call the norm of daily fat consumption the figure of 30-40% of daily caloric intake ³. Both large and small numbers can lead to metabolic disorders, directly or indirectly provoking the body to accumulate fat reserves.

//  Fat norms per day - by weight  :

Norm weighing 50 kg Norm weighing 60 kg Norm weighing 70 kg Norm weighing 80 kg
Weight loss 40 gr 40 gr 40 gr 40 gr
To maintain weight 55 gr 60 g 60 g 65 g
For muscle gain 70 gr 70 gr 75 g 80 g
Weight loss 30 gr 35 gr 35 gr 40 gr
To maintain weight 45 g 50 gr 50 gr 55 gr
For muscle gain 60 g 60 g 65 g 70 gr

Recommendations for muscle building

Fat is a structural element without which the human body is unable to produce steroid hormones. First of all, we are talking about testosterone in men and estrogen in women. Reducing the rate of fat to 15-20% of the total caloric intake of the diet has an extremely negative effect on the hormonal background.

That is why the diet during the drying training must contain a sufficient amount of fat - mainly from various plant sources.

Fatty acid profile

As for the recommendations and norms regarding the profile of fatty acids, we most often talk about 40% saturated fats, 40% monounsaturated and 20% polyunsaturated (omega-3, 6).

The total intake of omega-6 fatty acids should not exceed 10% of the total fat. Ideally, the intake of omega-3 and omega-6 should be in a ratio of 4 to 1, but the modern diet rich in vegetable oils is close to a ratio of 1 in 10 or even 1 in 30.

//  SF: Saturated fat  - 40% of total fat

  • Animal fats (lard, bacon)
  • Butter, cheese, cream and other dairy products
  • Coconut oil
  • Palm oil

//  MUFA: Monounsaturated fats  - 40% of total fat

  • Olive oil
  • Rapeseed oil (rapeseed)
  • Nuts (excl. Walnuts)
  • Peanut butter
  • Avocado

//  PUFA: Polyunsaturated fats  - 20% of total fat; the ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 is from 4 to 1 to 1 to 1.

  • Omega-3: Fatty oil, fish oil, linseed oil
  • Omega-6: vegetable oils (sunflower, corn)


Daily fat intake is the most difficult nutritional problem. Although the figure itself varies from 40 to 60 g, it is necessary to take into account the profile of fatty acids - which is limited by the lack of clear information on the composition of specific products.

Data sources:

  1. Effects of a low-carbohydrate diet on energy expenditure during weight loss maintenance: a randomized study,  source
  2. Trans fatty acids: effects on metabolic syndrome, heart disease and diabetes, Micha R, Mozaffarian D., Department of Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health,  source
  3. OMS macronutrientes,  source
  4. Calculate the recommended source of fat  source