Are all oils created equal?
Sandra Hermiston and Ross McLaughlin , CTV Vancouver
Published Wednesday, January 2, 2019 6:00AM PST
Chances are your diet over the holidays may have included a lot of goodies. Now that the new year is here many are looking to eat healthier. But when it comes to choosing the right cooking oil, the choices can be overwhelming.
From canola and coconut, to good old fashioned olive oil, different oils work well with different types of cooking and dishes.
“You need some fat in your diet. But you want to look for oils that are made mostly of healthy fats, such as monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat. Those fats will help you lower your risk of heart disease and other health conditions,” said Trisha Calvo, Consumer Reports health editor.
So which oils should you use, and how should you use them?
The mild, sweet flavour of coconut oil will enhance your Asian dishes. But it is mostly made up of heart unhealthy saturated fat so it’s best used in moderation.
(Monounsaturated: 6%, Polyunsaturated: 2%, Saturated: 82%)
Other oils are packed with good fats. First on the list?
If you like your meats nicely seared outside, avocado oil may be your go-to. Use it when high heat is called for. It has a nutty, buttery flavour.
(Monounsaturated: 71%, Polyunsaturated: 13%)
If you don’t want the flavour of the oil to come through in your cooking, canola oil’s neutral flavour is a good choice. Use for everything from baked goods to a delicate fresh fish.
(Monounsaturated: 63%, Polyunsaturated: 28%)
Olive Oil has a bold flavour range - from grassy or peppery to fruity. Use it to sauté veggies or meat, or simply let it stand on its own as a dip for raw vegetables, or use it as a dressing for salads.
(Monounsaturated: 73%, Polyunsaturated: 11%)
Deep frying calls for oil with a high smoke point. Safflower oil is a good option - it’s also good for general cooking, and its mild, nutty flavour is fine for baked goods.
(Monounsaturated: 75%, Polyunsaturated: 13%)
Instead of using a fat-free dressing on your salad, drizzle it with one of the “good” oils we just mentioned, like olive oil, and a little lemon or vinegar. Your body needs that good fat to better absorb the nutrients in your salad.