4.21.2008

What Is The Healthiest Cooking Oil?

I used to fry with coconut oil, since it is most commonly used by Filipinos and is the most available in any mini-store, until someone told me to use Canola oil instead. They say it is healthier and that you won't be worried of having a heart disease because you are using a healthy cooking oil. Was it any different from coconut oil or vegetable oil that are commonly seen in stores? How does it become healthier that the others? I did a research on Canola oil and other common cooking oils as well.

From Wikipedia:
Cooking oil is purified fat of plant or animal origin, which is liquid at room temperature.

It is not actually the kind of cooking oil that determines whether it is healthy or not but from the type of fat it is composed of.

Let us start of with the bad fats. Saturated fats increase the LDL cholesterol (also known as bad cholesterol) and total blood cholesterol. Another member of the bad fats group is called Trans fats, which increases the bad cholesterol and decreases the good cholesterol (HDL cholesterol). We should avoid using cooking oils with high content of saturated fats and/or trans fats.


Then there are the good fats, Polysaturated fats and Monosaturated fats. These type of fats lower the total blood cholesterol and bad cholesterol and increases the good cholesterol. And by the way, Omega 3 fatty acids are Polysaturated fats.

It doesn't matter what cooking oil are you using as oil as it has no saturated and trans fats and more of the polysaturated and monosaturated fats. I grouped this cooking oils for you:

Healthy cooking oils:

  • canola oil
  • peanut oil
  • olive oil
  • sunflower oil
  • corn oil
  • soft margarine (non-hydrogenated)
Unhealthy cooking oils:
  • coconut oil
  • hard margarine
  • butter
  • palm oil
  • palm kernel oil
  • vegetable shortening
Website Fatfreekitchen lists the amount of saturated, polysaturated, and monosaturated fats found in each type of cooking oil here.

Cooking oils are for foods that are best eaten when fried or sauteed, but we should eat less of it. If you could manage to eat fat-free meals, that would be much better.

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