Around 1907, a German scientist contacted Procter & Gamble to tell them he had invented a way to turn liquid fat into a solid, and suggested it would transform their soap products. But when the company’s scientists found that they could
turn cottonseed oil into a creamy, lardlike substance, they decided to forget soap! They saw it as a perfect replacement for animal fats used for cooking, and so did America. The company sold 2.6 million pounds of what it branded as
Crisco in 1912, and 60 million pounds four years later.
Although this vegetable fat was marketed as the healthier way to cook, it was 50 percent trans fats, which are hydrogenated fats commonly used in processed and fast foods.
Current studies show trans fats are heart-stopping: For every 2 percent increase in consumption of trans fat, the risk of heart disease increases by 23 percent! Studies also implicate trans fats in adverse effects on the brain and nervous system, and increased risk of depression and dementia.
Nonetheless, for 100 years, all vegetable oils were touted as the solution to Americans’ health problems. Instead we have grown more obese, more likely to have diabetes and dementia, and more depressed.
Not all vegetable oils are created equal, not by a long shot. And now, to add to the confusion, there’s a new study suggesting that canola oil — the current darling of the processed food industry and home cooks — may help lay the foundation for the development of Alzheimer’s disease. There’s much to dispute in those scary headlines about the study in Scientific Reports. The researchers themselves are more cautious, saying, “Taken together, our findings
do not support a beneficial effect of chronic canola oil consumption on two important aspects of AD pathophysiology, which includes memory impairments as well as synaptic integrity. While more studies are needed, our data do not
justify the current trend aimed at replacing olive oil with canola oil.”
So really it’s just a study that says, STICK WITH OLIVE OIL!
Furthermore, the study was done on mice that are engineered to develop markers of AD and it found only one indicator that may be significant: While mice choosing a direction at a fork in the road tend to alternate in their selection
from time to time, 20 percent of the canola-eating rodents in the study didn’t alternate as often as expected. So does that mean humans who eat canola oil will be cognitively impaired? Doubtful.
Your health and vegetable oils A vegetable oil is healthy or not healthy depending on how it’s processed, what it contains and how it’s used.
Processing is often done using a solvent (typically the toxin hexane) to separate the oil from the seed. However, expeller pressed oils use mechanical, not chemical, means. The cold-pressed method also is mechanical, but the oil is
kept cooler during extraction. There’s little health difference between expeller and cold-pressed.
Some oils contain a boatload of saturated fat and should be avoided. One tablespoon of palm oil has 7 grams of sat fat; 1 tablespoon of palm kernel oil has 11 grams; coconut oil, 12 grams. Others are rich in polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, which if not eaten in excess are heart-healthy and help tamp down inflammation. Your best bet is to opt for omega-3-rich oils like extra virgin olive oil and oil in avocados and nuts.
EVOO helps lower lousy LDL cholesterol and contains beta carotene and vitamins A, E, D, and K.
Some oils, especially light/refined olive, almond, avocado and sunflower oils, are prefect for searing and browning at higher temperatures — they have a high smoke point, so you avoid producing toxic fumes and unhealthy byproducts.
Canola, grapeseed and peanut have a medium high smoke point; use for baking, stir frying and oven cooking. Some are good for use at room temp: flaxseed, wheat germ, walnut and EVOO.
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Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into “The Dr. Oz Show” or visit www.sharecare.com.
© 2017 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.
Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc
This column is sponsored by your local choice for healthy lifestyle products -Nutter's Bulk and Natural Foods
365 36th St. W, Prince Albert, SK
Phone: (306) 922-3835
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