I’ve been wanting to try a new, high smoke point cooking oil (while I love coconut oil, not every recipe lends itself to that flavor). Knowing how confusing the oil landscape is, I did a bit of research before making a purchase. You might be thinking, “Come on, Joanna, you don’t need to put this much thought into this. Just grab some canola oil and get cooking!” If only it were that simple. Did you know:
Over 90% of canola oil is genetically modified
Canola oil is often partially hydrogenated (to increase stability), but that stability can increase negative health effects (think kidney, liver, and neurological health issues).
As long as a serving contains less than 0.5 grams of trans fat, companies are allowed to claim a product has “zero trans fat.” (Just so you know, trans fatty acids are hazardous byproducts of food processing and come with a variety of health concerns, and have been scientifically known to increase LDL and lower HDL--the opposite of what you want).
Hmm. I’m willing to bet you’ve meandered over to your pantry and pulled that bottle of canola oil off the shelf and walked it to the recycling bin. Well, while you’re at it, you might want to chuck these oils as well: corn oil, safflower oil, soy oil and vegetable oil.
So what DO you use?! Well, now that we’ve Marie-Kondo-ed your cabinet (you can thank me later for all that extra shelf space), I can tell you what I chose to go with: Avocado oil!
I chose it for a variety of reasons (mainly flavor and versatility: use raw in salad dressings or for high temp cooking), but there are a whole host of added health benefits that avocado oil provides:
Naturally lowers and maintains healthy blood pressure (Thanks, monounsaturated fats!)
Improves arthritis symptoms (Hello, anti-inflammatory effects!)
Benefits psoriasis and skin problems (Nice to see ya, vitamin B12!)
Lower cholesterol and improve heart health (Up you go, HDL, see ya later LDL!)
Boosts nutrient absorption (Welcome to the party, antioxidants!)
So, now you can see why I’m looking forward to cooking with avocado oil (I got one from Primal Kitchen).
And, if you’re uncomfortable with all that extra pantry space you gained by tossing out all your old oils, you can fill the void with coconut oil, ghee, and olive oil. That should leave you in good shape for the majority of your cooking needs. Happy cooking!