For our daily cooking, we use different types of oils. Different brands, different names of oils, and eye-catching advertisements throw us into confusion. Many people suffer from dilemmas about which one to buy and which one to avoid. So, it is necessary to know what to look for when buying oil. Nevertheless, all types of oils contain fat. But it doesn't mean that fat is always bad for health. Oils usually contain saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fats, which are responsible for varying our blood cholesterol levels. Let's get to know the best cooking oils that are healthy for our bodies. Besides, we will also go through the worst cooking oil for our health.
Basics about cooking oil
Both refined and unrefined oils are commonly used in cooking. Most unrefined oils have low smoking points (the temperature at which the oil heats up and emits smoke), making them unsuitable for cooking at high temperatures. So this kind of oil should be used mainly for making salad dressings, marinades, and sauces or for low heat baking.
Unrefined oil contains a lot of bioactive ingredients, which are beneficial for the body, as well as to add flavor to cooking. This type of oil is also better if the amount of vitamin E in it is unrefined as well as monounsaturated, such as olive oil, rice bran, canola, sesame oil, mustard oil.
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You have to decide which oil to use in any cooking considering the smoking point. This is because even if an oil is beneficial at normal temperatures if it is kept at a temperature higher than its smoking point, the quality of the oil can be lost.
Saturated fats slowly increase blood LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, which is responsible for putting our heart at risk. Hence, it is recommended to avoid oils that are high in these fats. Again, polyunsaturated fats increase the level of HDL (good) cholesterol in the blood, which is beneficial. Oils that are high in polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats are safe to use.
All types of oil found in the market contain labels with a list of nutrients. So, take a note of the available amount of fat on this list when buying the cooking oil. Besides, choosing the oil with high polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats are beneficial for health.
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Best Cooking Oil
Our health largely depends on what kind of oil we use in food. Not only the type of oil but also its quantity and method of use have a great impact on health. Following are the best cooking oils anyone can use for daily cooking.
Cooking enthusiasts consider cooking in olive oil the healthiest, especially cooking in the extra virgin olive oil. Because, it is completely authentic. Moreover, extra virgin olive oil is not refined and processed. That is why its quality is very good. It contains a lot of monounsaturated fats and some polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are good for the heart. Besides, olives are considered the healthiest for baking and salad dressings.
Canola oil is extracted from the rapeseed (canola seed), which is a part mustard family plant and contains more monounsaturated fats and the right amount of polyunsaturated fats. Of all the vegetable oils, canola oil contains the least amount of saturated fat. This oil has more benefits when cooked over high heat. But because it is processed, many do not consider it healthy.
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Avocado oil is considered to be very healthy. It is also not as refined as extra virgin olive oil. This oil is cooked over high heat, and it is not tasty. It benefits heart disease by balancing cholesterol levels with unbalanced fatty acid components. Avocado oil contributes to the health of the stomach and digestive system. It is rich in minerals as well as vitamins A, B1, B2, B5, D, and E. Avocado oil obtained from the distillation of avocado fruit is especially used in food and salads. Avocado oil is also an ideal choice for those who want to lose weight.
Sunflower contains a high amount of Vitamin E. 100 gm of sunflower oil contains 56 mg vitamin E. Since the sunflower oil has no taste, the cooked food has no taste of the oil. It is used in high heat cooking. This oil is high in omega-6 fatty acids. The omega-6 fatty acids are essential for the body, but overuse can lead to inflammation. If you cook in sunflower oil, balance it with omega-3 in your diet.
Cooking with peanut oil is beneficial for health and also tastes very good. There are different varieties of peanut oil. It contains a lot of monounsaturated fat. Apart from the taste, the aroma is also quite good. Moreover, this oil is high in fat. So, it has to be used sparingly in cooking. Peanut oil relieves pain in the hands and feet. If you want to fry something hard, you can use this oil.