The average diet contains 40 percent fat, of which a large percentage is saturated. It is now recommended that not only should we reduce our intake of fat, we should aim to replace saturated fats with healthier fats known as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. One good way to do this is to use olive, canola or peanut oil instead of butter for cooking.
Most vegetable oils are high in polyunsaturates, while olive, canola (also called rapeseed) and peanut oils are high in monounsaturates. Both these types of fats are considered healthier than saturated fats. Coconut and palm oils are high in saturated fats.
Today, margarine spreads are usually made with mono or polyunsaturated vegetable oils, which make them lower in saturated fat than butter. However, some margarines, particularly the harder block varieties, may have animal fats added, so if reducing your cholesterol and saturated fat intake is a concern, read the labels carefully before use.