Distinguish between unsaturated and saturated fatty acids.

Unsaturated fatty acids

Saturated fatty acids

(1) They have one or two or three double bonds between the carbon atoms of the molecular chain.

(2) They have lower melting and boiling points.

(3) They cannot be synthesized in the body of any animal and are therefore essential.

(4) Are more reactive and do not have a tendency to settle in the body.

(5)  Generally less harmful and do not cause cardiovascular diseases e.g. oleic acid.


(1) They have no double bonds between the atoms of the molecular chain.

(2) They have higher melting points and boiling points.

(3) They can be synthesized in the animal body and are therefore non-essential.

(4) Are more stable and tend to accumulate in the body.

(5) Harmfull and can cause cardiovascular diseases e.g. stearic acid.