Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Best Bets for Healthy Oils

Do you consume enough healthy oils? The best way to eat oils is in their natural, raw forms - as in salad dressing mixtures with vinegar. You should have some of them each day. Here are the healthiest choices for oils:
  • Extra-virgin, cold pressed olive oil
  • Palm Oil
  • Extra-virgin coconut Oil
  • Flax oil
If you must cook oils, the best ones for this purpose are grapeseed and coconut oil, as they have higher smoke points than most other oils and remain stable at higher heat temperatures. Avoid cooking olive oil at very high temperatures, and flax oil should not be consumed heated at all.

The following are not safe for consumption:
  • Canola oil
  • Soybean oil
  • Flax oil
  • Corn oil
  • Safflower oil
  • Sunflower oil
What's the problem with vegetable oils? Vegetable oils are full of polyunsaturated fats (long-chain fatty acids) that are fragile and unstable. "The unsaturated oils inn some cooked foods become rancid in just a few hours even when refrigerated," states Ray Peat, Ph. D. a physiologist who has studied hormones and dietary fats since 1968. "And that's responsible for the stale taste in leftover foods. Eating slightly stale food with polyunsaturated oils isn't more harmful than eating the same oils when fresh, since the oils oxidize at a much higher rate once they are in the body. As soon as a polyunsaturated vegetable oil enters the body, it is exposed to temperatures high enough to cause its toxic decomposition, especially when combined with a continuous supply of oxygen and catalysts such as iron." These oils are purported to be one of the root causes of serious human health issues like heart disease, premature aging, high blood pressure, cancer, obesity, and immune system disorders.

Among vegetable oils, the safest is considered olive oil. However, Peat cautions that consumption of olive oil should occur in moderation. Olive oil's content of polyunsaturated fats (approximately 8 to 12 percent) is several times higher than that of coconut oil (roughly 1 to 2 percent), and means that use of olive oil should be less in comparison with coconut.

Vegetable oils are also often genetically-modified. Consumption of genetically-modified organisms carry a list of health risks. For more information, visit Seeds of Deception.

For more information about the reasons for consuming healthy oils and fats, visit The Scream Online and also the web site of Chet Day.

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