Monday, December 8, 2008

Are Vegetable Oils Healthy?

Do you eat vegetable oil on food? Vegetable oils include the following:
  • canola oil (also known as rapeseed oil from rapeseed)
  • soybean oil
  • cottonseed oil
  • corn oil
  • peanut
  • sunflower
  • safflower
These polyunsaturated fats, heralded by the health community at large, are found in many processed foods such as salad dressings, breads, crackers, bagels, desserts, baked goods, cakes, and are also used in a majority of cooking in restaurants, and other public and private kitchens such as a majority of people's homes. How can these oils be so unhealthy?

Beware! Many "health experts", doctors, dieticians, and other individuals in health communities will tell you these oils are healthy to consume. But actually, they are some of the main culprits of degenerative disease plaguing people in the United States. Ray Peat, Ph.D in physiology who has studied hormones and dietary fats since 1986 reports that these oils are unhealthy to consume. "Polyunsaturated fatty acids, PUFAs -- those contained in the above mentioned oils, "are the bane of human health - they actually cause cancer, diabetes, obesity, aging, thrombosis, arthritis, and immunodeficiencies. Their only appropriate uses are as ingredients in paints and varnishes. 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."

So which oils are healthy to consume? Olive oil (extra virgin, cold pressed), grapeseed oil, coconut oil (pure virgin), and flax oil only if raw. Olive oil should only be heated on low heat on the stove or oven as its composition is delicate and it has a low-smoke point. Grapeseed oil and coconut oil are wonderfully healthy and are higher-smoke point oils that can be used in higher heat for cooking without going rancid. Real butter from a reliable, organic source (raw is a plus) is also a healthy fat that can be used for cooking or used on whole-grain, sprouted breads.

For an in-depth discussion about healthy oils, visit Dr. Mercola.

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