As a professional health coach concerned with the health and well-being of my clients it is my intention to improve your well-being and longevity by using the principles of nutrition, fitness, diet, lifestyle dynamics, and anti-aging medicine.
Together you and I will work as a team to accomplish all of your health needs and to ensure that you practice prevention and live your life through the lens of quality.
Remember….your quality of life is the measurement of successful living regardless of your age.
Dr. Kevin. J. McLaughlin
Clinical Director: The Vitality Project
Various oils are used in our diets for cooking or consuming as a salad dressing or condiment. I would like to discuss several commonly used oils and how they can benefit your health.
Canola oil is also called rapeseed oil and is cultivated and widely used in human nutrition. This oil is liquid at room temperature and contains low levels of saturated fat but higher levels of mono-saturated fat found in olive oil, omega-6 fat typically contained within soybean, sunflower and safflower oils and the omega-3 fats found in flax and fish oils. Canola oil is an interesting vegetable oil because it contains a lower ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fat which is important if you want to control the amount of inflammation in your body. I recommend that you do not use this oil with a high degree of heat because of its relatively high amounts of sensitive omega-3 fats.
Olive oil is similar to canola oil except that it contains more saturated fat and can take medium temperatures which would be the case with stir-frying. Use the extra virgin forms and add the oil at the end of the cooking process. Or use this oil at room temperature as a condiment or salad dressing. Peanut oils are also safe to use in stir-frying because they contain no omega-3 fats so are considered more stable to use with a medium heat source.
Oils made from corn and soybeans contain higher amounts of omega-6 fats and are mostly polyunsaturated. However, the high amounts of omega-6 to omega-3 fats in corn oil make this oil a poor choice in comparison to soybean oil which has a much better ratio of omega-6 to omega-3.
In my opinion, sesame oil is one of the better oils to cook with for various reasons. Firstly, it contains a higher amount of mono-saturated fat, more saturated fat and less polyunsaturated fat making this oil much more stable at higher temperatures. Plus it has a great taste!
The oils which can stand up to higher temperatures are almond, avocado and sunflower oils. Although I don’t like the idea of cooking with a specific type of oil using high heat, these oils are mostly mono-saturated and are stable enough to tolerate higher degrees of heating for short periods of time.
The best oil for frying is coconut oil because it is high in saturated fat and can tolerate the high temperatures associated with frying. Although it is a saturated fat, heating it will not cause the formation of Trans fat.
I think that you should use coconut oil sparingly, but don’t be afraid to use it when you are using higher amounts of heat during cooking. My advice is to use virgin oils stored in dark containers and don’t expose them to heat, oxygen or light between uses. Use medium to lower heats when cooking or grilling and try to use the oils at the end of the cooking process. Oils like flax and extra-virgin should be consumed at room temperature and not heated.