The consumption of polyunsaturated fats has increased dramatically in the past century, going from just over 10 grams per day in the early 1900’s to around 40 grams per day in the early 2000’s. Polyunsaturated fats are often labeled as “heart healthy” and can be found in thousands of products at your local supermarket.
They’re also a prominent ingredient in vegetable oils. While healthy in low quantities, omega-6 is hypothesized to contribute to chronic inflammation, which is a major factor in many common Western diseases. This includes cancer, arthritis, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
So, when you’re cooking up your favorite dish, the last thing you want is to be using a cooking oil that can potentially harm your health. With this in mind, we’ve listed and explained the five most popular cooking oils.
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Companies use the term “vegetable oil” because they can then use any appropriate commodity to manufacture the product, without having to change the label. Most vegetable oils are made of sunflower, palm, canola, corn and cottonseed oils. The problem with vegetable oils is that they’re highly refined and processed, often with chemicals.
While not necessarily harmful in low quantities, it would be wise to avoid using vegetable oils in your cooking. The manufacturing process involved in making them strips the oil of any nutritional value, not to mention flavor. Listed below are some healthy alternatives.
Coconut oil is a popular alternative to vegetable oil that comes with a long list of health benefits. This includes its ability to increase fat burning, as it contains medium-chain triglycerides that can increase how many calories you burn. Coconut oil also contains 12-carbon lauric acid, which kills harmful viruses, fungi and bacteria in your body.
Olive oil is another popular vegetable oil alternative. Extra virgin olive oil in particular is very healthy, as it means that the oil wasn’t refined or overly processed. Since it has a lower smoke point, olive oil is best suited for low to medium heat cooking.
The healthiest olive oil you can find is one that’s labeled as organic. This means that you’re not only getting a healthy and high-quality product, but also an oil that is produced in a way that is less harmful to the environment. You can buy organic extra virgin olive oil on this website. Use it to make sauces, pastas, stews and fried foods.
Peanut oil is best used for high heat cooking and features a nutty, flavorful taste and aroma. It has one of the highest monounsaturated fat contents and is generally good for your health.
Just like extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil is unrefined. Unlike olive oil, avocado oil has a high smoke point, making it suitable for cooking higher heat foods such as stir fry. There’s not much flavor to avocado oil and it has a creamy texture, which makes it a great oil to cook with.
There are many more oils out there that you can use in place of vegetable oil. Don’t hesitate to do some exploring and give them a try.