Avoid these Cooking Oils that Destroys Your Health

Lot of people think that anything labeled as vegetable oil is good for the health. Well, most of them labeled as “vegetable oil” is heavily refined soybean oil (processed under high heat, pressure, and industrial solvents, such as hexane). Sometimes it may also be heavily refined cottonseed, safflower, corn, grapeseed, or other oils too.

In most instances, processed oils are not healthy for you. If you buy processed food or deep fried food, you can usually be certain that these unhealthy oils are used to prepare your foods (or worse, it may use hydrogenated versions of these oils… aka – trans fats). You may have also bought some of these oils for your own cooking or baking at home.

The problem with soybean oil, cottonseed oil, corn oil, safflower oil, and other similar so called vegetable oils is that they are mostly composed of polyunsaturated fats, the most highly reactive type of fat, which leaves them prone to oxidation and free radical production when exposed to heat and light. Processed polyunsaturated oils are the most inflammatory in our bodies because of their high reactivity to heat and light. This inflammation causes many of our internal problems to develop such as heart disease, cancer, and other degenerative diseases.


It’s ok if polyunsaturated fat source isn’t processed such as in whole foods like various nuts and seeds. In that case it’s usually not inflammatory (as long as it’s not been exposed to high heat) and nuts are usually a great source of healthy polyunsaturated fats. Omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids are both polyunsaturated, and a healthy balance of approx 1:1 to 3:1 ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 is considered healthiest.

Your best choice is to choose raw nuts and seeds whenever possible to avoid the oxidation of polyunsaturated fats that can occur during roasting of nuts and seeds. Keep in mind that some nuts are mostly monounsaturated, (for example, macadamias). So the issue of roasted vs raw nuts is less of an issue for highly monounsaturated nuts.

However, all of the vegetable oils listed above are generally heavily refined during processing, so that makes them already inflammatory before you even cook with them which means it does even more damage to your health.

Here’s the actual order of stability of a type of fat under heat and light (from least stable to most stable):

  1. polyunsaturated 2. monounsaturated 3. saturated

Saturated fats are actually the healthiest oils to cook with!

Why? Simply because they are much more stable in cooking conditions and less inflammatory than polyunsaturated oils with cooking. This is why tropical oils such as palm and coconut oils are best for cooking… they have very little polyunsaturates and are mostly composed of natural saturated fats which are the least reactive to heat/light and therefore the least inflammatory in your body from cooking use.

That’s also why natural butter, not margarine, is one of the best fats for cooking. This all goes directly against what you hear in mainstream health talk because most health professionals don’t truly understand the biochemistry of fats, and falsely believe that saturated fats are bad for you. When in fact, they are actually neutral in most instances and saturated fats from tropical oils are actually good for you as they contain mostly medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) which are lacking in most people’s diets.

To summarize, your best cooking or baking fats are generally butter or tropical oils such as palm or coconut oil. Olive oil (extra virgin preferably) is good for lower cooking temps as it’s mostly monounsaturated, which means it is moderately stable. The mostly polyunsaturated oils such as soybean, corn, grapeseed, cottonseed, safflower, etc, are the least healthy for cooking or baking.

My choices for top healthy cooking oils that I use:

* Virgin Coconut Oil – very stable at med-high temps and healthy fats

* Extra Virgin Olive Oil – only for low temp cooking

* Real Butter – grass fed butter is actually healthy and contains important nutrients like vitamin K2, omega-3’s, and CLA. Kerrygold is a popular brand of Irish butter that’s grass-fed and readily available in most grocery stores

We should keep in mind that trying to minimize our cooking with oils can help to reduce overall calories. Cooking with oils in moderation is good and can actually help satisfy your appetite more but be careful not to overdo it as the calories can add up fast.

So enjoy your coconut oil, grass-fed butter, and delicious extra-virgin olive oils knowing that you’re doing your body GOOD! But just make sure to stay FAR AWAY from dangerous inflammatory vegetable oils like soybean oil, corn oil, and cottonseed oils which are used in so many processed foods these days.

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