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Page | Last updated: 14 Jun 2024

Food-Based Dietary Guidelines recommendations for oil and fats

Summary of FBDG recommendations for oil and fats for the the EU, Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and the United Kingdom

Due care was taken to ensure factually correct information. Food groupings and food group names differ across individual FBDGs; the ones used here are a compromise to present the information in a structured way. Differences such as those in number of portions and portion sizes were kept unaltered. The original country FBDGs and the responsible national public health authorities remain the only qualified points of reference.


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- Limit the consumption of products high in saturated fatty acids and avoid trans fatty acids as much as possible.

- To replace hard margarines and butter, give preference to non-tropical oils, spreadable fats and soft or liquid cooking fats.

- Coconut and palm oil should be avoided.


- Limit total fat intake, especially animal fat.

- Prefer vegetable fats to animal fats, but consume them in moderation.

- Add as little fat as possible when cooking, avoid frying.

- When cooking, replace animal fats with vegetable oils.

- Choose soft margarines with a low fat content (40-25%).

- Limit the consumption of products containing hard margarine - biscuits, waffles, dry pastes, etc.

Czechia-- Monitor your fat intake, limit the amount of fat in hidden form (fatty meat, fatty meat and dairy products, soft and durable pastries with a higher fat content, chips, chocolate products) and when preparing meals. Prefer fats with a low content of saturated fatty acids.-


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- For cooking, choose vegetable oils like rapeseed and olive oil rather than solid fats, such as butter and coconut oil.

- Limit the use of butter on bread and sandwiches.

- Choose for example hummus or a little pesto instead.


- 60-80 g daily of total fat is sufficient.

- Every day, eat 10-15 g of oil (e.g. rapeseed, walnut, or soybean oil) and 15-30 g of margarine or butter.

- Fat and fatty foods in moderation.

- Favour vegetable oils and fats (e.g. canola oil, soybean oil, margarines produced therefrom).

- Be aware of hidden fat.

E.g. 10-15 g oil and 15-30 g butter or similar
Estonia6-7 portions of added fats, nuts, seeds, oilseeds. (1-2 portions of seeds, nuts, etc., 5 portions of vegetable oils, oils, spreads)

- Prefer oil and butter.

- When frying, prefer refined oils such as pork, coconut, or palm oil.

- Vary.

- Oil should not smoke when cooked.

- Oils richest in omega-3: rapeseed & linseed oils.

5 g oil, 5 g butter, 5 g spread (if > 50% fat), 10-15 g spread (if ≤50% fat), 5 g coconut fat, 5 g lard. 1 portion ≈ 50 kcal.


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IrelandPortion packs of fat-reduced spread found in cafes can guide the amount to use. One should be enough for 2 slices of bread.

- Fats, spreads and oils: use as little as possible.

- Choose MUFA* or PUFA** or light spreads.

- Choose rapeseed, olive, canola, sunflower, or corn oils.

- Limit mayonnaise, coleslaw and salad dressing.

- Always cook with as little fat or oil as possible.

* mono-unsaturated fatty acids
** poly-unsaturated fatty acids

1 portion pack reduced-fat or light spread for 2 slices of bread, 1 teaspoon oil per person when cooking or in salads.
Note: Always cook with as little fat or oil as possible - measure it out instead of pouring into pan.
Greece4-5 servings per day

- Limit animal fat intake.

- Olive oil should be the main added fat.

- Avoid consumption of trans fat, mainly found in commercial products (i.e. biscuits, sweets, prepared sauces, fast-food).

1 tbsp olive oil (15 ml), 1 tbsp other vegetable oils (15 ml), 1 handful nuts, 10-12 olives, 1 tbsp butter or margarine (15 ml).
Note: Includes advice on nuts and olives
SpainUse olive oil in all meals

- Reduce the consumption of saturated fats, such as butter and other animal fats.

- Use olive oil, as a dressing and in food preparation. Adapt the amount you consume according to your energy needs, limiting its consumption in case of excess weight or medical advice.

- Virgin olive oil is the oil of choice for its content in beneficial substances for health as flavonoids, decreasing the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and overall mortality.

- Extra virgin olive oil also has a higher organoleptic quality.

Note: One serving is equivalent to 10 ml. Example: 1 tablespoon


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- Avoid excessive consumption.

- Prefer rapeseed and nut oils (rich in alpha-linolenic acid*) and olive oil, without increasing the commonly consumed quantity of added fats.

- Animal fats should be reserved for raw or spreadable use and in limited quantities.

* Compared to low ALA oils (including sunflower or peanut oils).


- Total fat should not exceed 30% of total energy intake.

- Intake of saturated fats should be less than 10% of total intake.

- Limit sweets, salt and fat.

- Include high-quality vegetable oils such as olive, linseed and pumpkin oil in your daily diet

Italy2-4 portions per day

- Moderate the amount of fats and oils you use for seasoning and cooking.

- Prefer vegetable oils, and especially olive oil, instead of animal fats or other fats high in saturated fatty acids.

- Unsaturated fats should preferably be used raw or with mild cooking treatiment.

10 ml vegetable oils; 10 g butter, animal -derived fats and plant-derived fats
Note: Total fats should be <30% energy intake; saturated fats<10% energy; polyunsaturated fats 5-10%energy; monounsaturated fats: 10-15% energy


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CyprusUse olive oil (2-4 tablespoons or 30-60 ml) on a daily basis, in salads but also in cooking

- Limit use.

- Prefer olive oil.

- Only add small amounts of fat during cooking.

- Keep correct ratio of fats in your diet.

- Never use butter/margarine/cream.

- Avoid saturated fats (found in meat and full-fat dairy products).

1 teaspoon (5 ml) oil, 1 teaspoon (5 ml) mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon (15 ml) light mayonnaise, 1/8 avocado (medium) (2 tablespoons, 30 ml), 1 teaspoon (5 ml) margarine, 1 teaspoon (5 ml) butter, 6 almonds, 2 walnuts, 10 peanuts.
LatviaConsume no more than 25-30% of your daily energy needs, or an average of 67-80 g

- Reduce the intake of animal fats, incl. butter consumption. Better to choose vegetable oils.

- It is recommended to use moderate amounts of good quality rapeseed oil, olive oil, nuts and seeds, and their oils, as well as avocados.


- Replace animal fats (fat, butter, sour cream) and other products with a lot of saturated fat (coconut and palm oil, hard margarines) with vegetable oils (olive, rapeseed).

- Limit the consumption of products containing trans fats.



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Luxembourg--Favour vegetable fats (olive oil, rapeseed oil, etc.) and limit animal fats (butter, cream, lard, etc.). Alternate between different types of oil, such as olive oil, rapeseed oil, sunflower oil, linseed oil, walnut oil, etc.Approximately 1 tablespoon

- Choose food with less salt, fat, sugar.

- Fatty foods (cakes, biscuits, ice cream, fatty cheeses, sausages, mayonnaise): not every day and in small amounts.

- Use less oil when preparing food, cooking methods requiring less oil.

- Fried food: only occasionally.

MaltaOlive oil: 1 tbsp (15 ml) per person per dayUse olive oil as the principal source of dietary fats/oils1 tbsp (15 ml)


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- Men, 19-50 yr: 65 g per day

- Women, 19-50 yr: 40 g per day

-Additional recommendations for children; elderly; pregnant women; lactating women.

Replace butter, hard margarines, and cooking fats with soft margarines, liquid cooking fats, and vegetable oilsSpreadable fat: 6 g
Cooking fat: 15 g
Austria1-2 tablespoons of vegetal oil, nuts or seeds per day

- Prefer high-quality oils: olive, rapeseed, walnut, soybean, linseed, sesame, maize, sunflower, pumpkin, grapeseed + nuts, seeds.

- Use spreadable, baking, frying fats (e.g. butter, margarine, lard), fatty dairy (e.g. cream, sour cream, crème fraiche) sparingly.

1 tablespoon oil, 1 tablespoon butter / margarine
Poland-Limit intake of animal fats - substitute with vegetable oils (especially rapeseed and olive oil), but in small quantities and best raw-


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Portugal1-3 servings of oil/fatsReducing the consumption of fats, in particular of the solid fats (animal origin); give preference to consumption of olive oil1 tablespoon (olive) oil (10 g), 1 teaspoon lard (10 g), 4 tablespoons cream (30 ml), 1 tablespoon butter/margarine (15 g).

- Recommend reducing the consumption of fats, particularly those saturated; Olive oil should be preferred.

- Choose vegetable oils instead of solid fats. Eat small amounts of fat.

1 tbsp

- Avoid excessive consumption of fats and fatty foods.

- Replace most saturated fats (animal fats) with unsaturated vegetable oils.

- When preparing food, use as little animal fat as possible and alternatively use high-quality oils (e.g. olive, rapeseed, sunflower, walnut, sesame).

- Limit the consumption of coconut, palm and cocoa butter as much as possible.

- Eat fried foods as moderately as possible.



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Slovakia5-9 servings a dayReplace saturated fats (e.g. margarine) by avocado, fish, nuts or virgin oils (e.g. sunflower seeds oil, olive oil)-

- Choose vegetable margarines with at least 60% fat. Increase the amount of unsaturated fats and reduce the amount of saturated fats.

- Particularly recommended: rapeseed oil or oil of equivalent composition.

- Not recommended: coconut oil, palm oil, and palm kernel oil.


- Choose healthy oils when cooking, such as rape seed oil or liquid fats made from rapeseed oil, and healthy sandwich spreads.

- Look for the Keyhole symbol.



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United Kingdom

- Choose unsaturated oils and spreads and eat in small amounts.

- All fat should be limited.

- Unsaturated fats are healthier fats that are usually from plant sources and in liquid form as oil, for example vegetable oil, rapeseed oil and olive oil.

- Swapping to unsaturated fats will help to reduce cholesterol in the blood, therefore it is important to get most of our fat from unsaturated oils.

Note: Butters are not included in this section as these are high in saturated fat and are included in the ‘foods to eat less often and in small amounts’ section

- 2-3 tablespoons per day (20-30 g) of vegetable oil, of which at least half should be rapeseed oil.

- Butter, margarine, cream, etc. can be used, however, sparingly (approx. 1 tablespoon = 10 g per day).

- Cold use: rapeseed, olive, walnut, flaxseed, wheat germ, soybean oil.

- Cooking: refined rapeseed, refined olive, high-oleic and low-linolenic (HOLL) rapeseed, high-oleic (HO) sunflower oil.

- Cooking at high temperature: HOLL rapeseed oil, high-oleic (HO) sunflower oil.

- Baking: refined rapeseed, refined olive, HOLL rapeseed, HO sunflower oil.

1 tablespoon = 10 g

- "Softer and healthier fat" (means more unsaturated fat).

- It is recommended to increase the amount of unsaturated fat and reduce the amount of saturated fat.

- Choose vegetable oils for cooking and for salads, for example rapeseed oil and olive oil instead of butter, margarine or coconut oil.

- Fatty fish, fishoil, vegetable oils, nuts, seeds and avocado are good providers of healthier fat.

- Try to use hummus, pesto or avocado as topping on bread.

- Choose products with the Keyhole label if possible.


- Choose edible oils, liquid margarine and soft margarine, rather than hard margarine and butter.

- Replace saturated fats with more favorable unsaturated fatty acids.