Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Healthy Cooking Oils to Choose from

Olive oil from Imperia in Liguria, Italy.Image via Wikipedia

Some Oils for cooking are good enough than solid fats like lard and butter because they are lower in saturated fats and good source of antioxidants. Besides the health benefits of this oils, there are also two big factors to come into play and that's flavor and smoke point. You have to choose the right oil for the job.

Rice Bran Oil = Neutral flavor wont hijack foods natural taste. Super high smoke point (490F) permits deep frying without turning your kitchen ceiling black. It contains tocoherol, oryzanol, and tocotrienol three Vitamin E related antioxidants that have been shown to inhibit both skin and breast cancer cells. Best for deep frying and stir frying.

Extra virgin Oil = "Extra virgin" means olives have gone through the press only once (versus at least twice for the regular kind), so the oil retains more of the fruits deep, earthy taste ideal for bread and pasta. Minimal processing may allow more of the olive's anti-oxidants, including heart protecting polyphenols, to make it to your table. Best for Dipping bread and Coating pasta.

Grapes seed Oil = Light, mild, fruity flavor adds a little zing. High smoke point (400F) is perfect for the frying pan. A good source of Vitamin E, betacarotene, and sterols, which block the absorption of cholesterol. Best for pan frying.

Flaxseed Oil = Mild, nutty flaxseed oil enhances but doesn't bulldoze fresh vegetables and greens. A good source of ALA an omega 3 fatty acid that benefits herat health. Best for Salad dressing.

Canola Oil = Light flavor is undetectable in baked goods. High smoke point (460F) can withstand a hotter than hell oven. Very low on saturated fats also good source of ALA. Best for baking and broiling.

Olive Oil = Heat kill's extra virgins rich flavor, so basic olive oil (sometimes labeled as "pure") does the trick for cooking. (You'll burn a lot less cash too a gallon of extra virgin costs almost twice as much.). Medium smoke point (375F) meas worry free sauteing a grilling. Thick consistency allows seasoning to stick to meats and vegetables. Olive oil is high in monounsaturated fats and antioxidants, such as oleuropein, which help prevent LDL or bad cholesterol from clogging your arteries. Best for sauteing, grilling and for pasta sauce.


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