Foods rich in monounsaturated fatty acids like avocado, olive oil and peanut butter are typically raved about by nutrition and dietary experts. But these foods may be falling short when it comes to their affect on satiety.
"The difference between the fatty acids are chain length and double bonds, and how it's broken down and used within our body and our cells," said registered dietitian Amanda Kozimor.
Kozimor is part of a team of researchers in the college of human sciences at TTU.
"We looked at the hormone peptide YY and it's affect on our feeling of satiety which is fullness," she said.
For the study, women of normal weight were given different ratios of these fatty acids.
"We found that the fat that had the least effect on feeling full was monounsaturated fatty acids and the fats that had the greatest effects on feeling full was polyunsaturated fatty acids and saturated fatty acids."
Point blank: Sources of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA's) like salmon and sources of saturated fatty acids (SFA's) such as deep fried corn dogs leave you feeling fuller.
As you can probably guess, her dietary recommendation does not include cutting out avocados and eating more fried food.
"Saturated fatty acids are obviously not good ones. So we don't want you to eat a lot of those. So increasing your polyunsaturated fatty acids is a great thing too because it has been found to make us feel full. It's found in great things too such as salmon, walnuts, almonds, fish oil supplements are a great thing if you don't like eating fish. So we want to increase our amount of polyunsaturated fatty acids we eat. And then learning how to pair protein with our monounsaturated fats."
A pairing of complex carbohydrates is also a great way to make your MUFA's go further, Kozimor adds.
Tech's study is the first of its kind. Due to its success, the team will follow up this research with a similar study on obese female subjects.
"It's just a really great time for nutrition and Texas Tech that we found these results."