Fatty Acids

Introduction to the Digestive System of the Human Body

Fatty Acids are the basic constituents (parts) of many important lipids (fats), including e.g. triglycerides. In terms of their chemistry, fatty acids are organic acids that have long straight hydrocarbon chains and an even number of carbon atoms.

In the same way as amino acids, some fatty acids can be synthesized (formed) in the body but others, called "essential fatty acids" must be obtained from the diet, i.e. ingested within foodstuffs - including beverages.

Examples of fatty acids include:

  • palmitic acid
  • oleic acid
  • stearic acid.

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