Profile of Cooking Oils

Today we’re going to explore the variety of pressed oils that are available and the best selection. I’ll not be covering olive oil today, as I’ve covered it before, and we’ll just touch base with coconut and almond as I’ve previously covered with them. Clearly I don’t use olive oil to cook with, but I love to drizzle on top of my dishes. We’ll explore some oils with a higher smoke point that you can stir-fry and fry up your veggies in. Here we go!

  • Almond Oil: considered a gourmet oil. It’s got 61% oleic acid and 30% linoleic acid.
  • Avocado Oil: a fatty acid profile similar to olive oil, but a higher smoke point. 70% monounsaturated.
  • Canola Oil: often confused as a ‘healthy oil’. It’s got 21% polyunsaturated fats (Omega-6) and 9% Omega-3’s, although the processes of the oil means that most of the omega-3’s could be ruined on self.
  • Coconut Oil: pressed from the fruit of the coconut. It is very stable and does not become rancid, even with long storage. Great to cook with as it has a high smoke point. The big hitters for coconut oil are the lauric acid and medium chain fatty-acids. Lauric acid, found in human breast milk plays a critical role in infant nutrition, as it has antimicrobial properties. A majority of the fat concentration is saturated, which is why it used to get a bad wrap (and because of poor manufacturing), but as we know (check past post) saturated fat is nothing to fear. Love to fry vegetables, chicken, or fruit in coconut oil!
  • Corn Oil: High in polyunsaturated fats, it tends to undergo oxidation more readily than other oils (which means it causes free radical damage). monounsaturated 24%, polyunsaturated 59% and 13% saturated fat
  • Cottonseed: this is made from cotton, which isn’t even a food, rather a clothing product! It’s in everything from cereal to bread to shortening since its cheap. 17% mono, a whopping 52% poly and 26% saturated.
  • Flaxseed Oil: more polyunsaturated. Often thought as healthy, it is prone to rancidity and oxidation when exposed to heat. 19%

monounsaturated, 24% omega-6’s, 9% saturated.

  • Macadamia Oil: one of my favorites its got a rich nutty smell and flavor. It’s high in monounsaturated fats and low in polyunsaturated. 71% mono 10% poly 12% saturated fat. I love it in salads, with protein pudding, and protein shakes (these are just some of the yummy options).
  • Olive Oil: Due to its concentration of natural antioxidants it has good keeping qualities and does not readily become rancid. Best quality is its got the highest concentration of hydroxytyrosol (the most potent antioxidant). Don’t cook with it because that zaps the antioxidants, but feel free to drizzle everywhere. Buy first pressed extra virgin olive oil, a sign of a good olive oil is a peppery aftertaste on the back of the throat. The Olio Beato brand has the highest concentration of hydroxytyrosol. 73% mono, 3.5-21% poly, and 14% saturated.
  • Palm: Used for over 5,000 years in parts of the world, it is usually hand harvested in either red or orange. It contains high levels of beta-carotene (hence the color), antioxidants tocophenols (vitamin E) and antioxidants tocotrienols. 39% mono, 11% poly, and 50% saturated fats.
  • Peanut Oil: peanuts of course are a legume, and this oil is prone to rancidity.
  • Safflower: Absolutely horrendous, it’s unbelievably high in omega-6 polyunsaturated fat- 75% with absolutely no omega-3’s to find.
  • Sesame Oil: Very good oxidative stability. Great for Asian dishes- stir frys, salads, etc. 43% mono, 43% poly and 14% saturated.
  • Sunflower: high in polyunsaturated, there’s nothing really good to say about this one. 19% mono, 63% poly, and 10% saturated.

Bottomline for today: oils to stay away from: corn, flax, canola, sunflower, cottonseed, safflower, and peanut. Good oils to add as fats: olive, avocado, macadamia, almond, and coconut. For more on Body Change Fat-Burner programs check out our website at bodychange.net.

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