The Ultimate Cooking Oil Guide: The 8 Healthiest Cooking Oils, Ranked
Discover The Healthiest Cooking Oils You Can Use… And The Least Healthy, Too!
In discussions about healthy foods, oils and fats often get a bad rap. They are frequently accused of all manner of atrocities, including cardiovascular disease, obesity, and other health issues.
However, it is time to take a deeper dive into oils and debunk the myth that fats and oils, in general, are bad for your health. Fats and oils are an essential component of a healthy diet. In fact, they must be consumed daily to facilitate essential body functions.
Why Oils Are An Essential Part Of Your Diet
1) Oils Are A Source Of Energy
The main source of energy in the human body is carbohydrates. When no carbs are available to fuel your body, however, fats are the main backup source of energy.
Fats are a more concentrated source of energy. One gram of fat provides nine calories, which is double the amount found in carbs and proteins.
The fact that fats are a high energy source is the reason why you want to keep your daily serving of them low. A Mayo Clinic report says that you should only obtain only 20-35% of your caloric intake from fats.
If you are on a 1,800-calorie per day diet, that means your daily serving of fats and oils should be 40-70g of fats.TRENDING: Science Reveals Easy, No-Workout Ways to Lose Weight… While You Snooze!
2) Oils Facilitate Vitamin Absorption
All of the fat-soluble vitamins must be dissolved in a fatty medium for the body to readily access them from your diet. These are vitamins A, D, E, and K.
Vitamin A is paramount for healthy night vision, vitamin D for calcium absorption that fosters healthy and strong bones, E for healthy skin and free radical elimination, and K for blood clotting.
Without sufficient fats in the diet, you may suffer a deficiency of these vitamins due to their hampered intake.
3) Oils & Fats Aid In Temperature Regulation
Your body stores fats as adipose tissue under your skin. This provides an insulating layer for temperature regulation.
Fats are also stored around vital organs (like your heart, kidney, and liver) to act as shock absorbers in case of sudden movement or impact.
The 4 Main Types Of Fats
The above are the three essential functions of fats and oils in your body. However, now that their roles in the body have been established… you need to take additional steps to make sure you incorporate the right fats and oils into your diet.
There are four main types of fats, and they are highlighted below:
From a chemical point of view, these are fats that have no double bond between the carbon molecules within their structures. This is due to saturation with hydrogen molecules.
These fats are often stable and will remain in solid form at room temperature.
Saturated fats are found in poultry with skin, fatty beef, butter, cheese, lamb, and pork. Fried and baked foods will most likely have very high sources of these fats.BRAND-NEW: Research Shows These 3 Sugar Substitutes Are Best For Burning Fat (Plus 2 You Should NEVER Eat)
These fats are deemed unhealthy due to their stability, which makes them inert to radicals and other poisons that healthy fats would otherwise eliminate. The American Heart Association recommends that you limit your intake of these fats by taking simple steps… like removing the skin on poultry and reducing your red meat potions.
Two types of trans-fats exist; naturally occurring ones and artificial trans-fats.
Naturally occurring trans-fats are found in the gut of some animals. Their products (milk, meat) may have trace amounts of these fats.
Artificial trans-fats are manufactured through an industrial process that adds hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to make them more solid.
In 2013, the Food and Drug Administration made a preliminary ruling that artificial trans-fats, which often appear on your favorite processed foods as ‘partially hydrogenated oils’ are no longer Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) in human food. These oils are the ones you actually want to avoid.
They raise your bad cholesterol, known as low-density lipoprotein or LPL, and lower your good cholesterol (High-Density Lipoprotein or HDL). Trans-fats increase your risk of heart disease and stroke, as well as type 2 diabetes.
Foods that contain trans-fats include doughnuts, frozen pizza, cake, spreads, crackers, chips, and other deep-fried or baked snacks. You can check the nutritional information on your favorite product to determine whether it contains trans-fats.
Be aware that it may list ‘0g of trans-fats’ yet it has up to 0.5g of them. Also, look out for ‘Partially Hydrogenated Oils’ to help you spot them.
Limit your intake of commercially baked and deep-fried foods, as companies use trans-fats to prepare them for their low cost. Such foods have very high-fat content, and more often than not, the fat is trans-fat.
These fats are the opposite of saturated fats. They have one carbon-carbon double bond within fat molecules because they are not saturated with hydrogen.
These fats are liquid at room temperature but turn into solid-state when chilled. Olive oil is an example of a monounsaturated oil and is beneficial for your health.SPECIAL: What’s REALLY Causing Your Weight Gain, High Blood Pressure & Constant Fatigue (If You’re Over 30 You Need to See This)…
For a healthy diet, you are advised to consume more of these in your diet than trans-fats. Monounsaturated fats reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood, which will lower your risk of strokes and heart disease.
These healthy fats also bring additional nutritional benefits, such as Vitamin E, an antioxidant vitamin. Excellent sources of monounsaturated fats include olive, canola, peanut, rapeseed, sesame, and safflower oils.
You can also find them in nuts like almonds, brazils, and peanuts.
Polyunsaturated fats have more than one carbon-carbon double bond within each molecule. These are also a healthier alternative to unsaturated and trans-fats.
Like mono-saturated fats, they contain Vitamin E and essential fats that the body cannot manufacture for itself, like omega-3 and -6 fatty acids.
Sources you can look to for these healthy oils include soybean, corn, and sunflower oils. Soybeans, canola, walnut, and flaxseed and their oils, plus oily fish like tuna, mackerel, herring, kippers, and salmon have polyunsaturated oils and alpha-linoleic acid (ALA), which is another beneficial omega-3 fatty acid.
While all fats have the same caloric value, unsaturated and trans-fats are the most unhealthy types of fats. Men should not have any more than 30g of saturated fats a day, while women must not exceed 20 g.
When it comes to trans-fats, adults are advised to keep it at less than 5g per day. You are advised to swap them out for mono- and polyunsaturated fats.
The 8 Healthiest Cooking Oils
1) Olive Oil
Many health-conscious chefs have nothing but praise for olive oil. Olive oil is derived from ripe olives and is a healthy component of the Mediterranean diet.
Extra-virgin olive oil is loaded with mono- and polyunsaturated oils and will transform your culinary experience with its intriguing flavor. You can also use it to bake or sauté, and drizzle on your favorite salad or pasta.
However, you cannot use olive oil for deep-frying as it has a lower smoking point (325-375⁰F).TRENDING: Women Who Eat These 3 Cheeses Are Losing Pounds of Stubborn Belly Fat (Research Proven)
The smoking point of an oil is the temperature at which an oil burns and begins producing smoke. Therefore its nutrients get destroyed at that temperature. Avoid cooking the oil at that temperature (or higher) to conserve its unique flavor.
If you use olive oil without cooking it, you will also get more flavor than after it is cooked.
If you would still like to enjoy frying your favorite foods in olive oil, go for a bottle of pure olive oil that has undergone chemical processing. Its smoking point will be way higher (465⁰F), but you will miss out on its flavor and some of its heart-friendly fats.
2) Canola Oil
Many people associate canola oil with bad health because it is often used to fry food. However, canola oil has only undergone some chemical processing to eliminate impurities and boost its smoking point, which has little effect on its nutritional value.
According to the FDA, 1 ½ tablespoonful of canola oil a day may reduce your risk of coronary disease significantly when used in place of saturated fats. It has a higher smoking point than olive oil (400⁰F); thus, you can use it for cooking at higher temperatures.
Canola oil, however, does not have a strong flavor like olive oil, so you do not want to use it as a salad dressing or any other recipe that requires some flavor from the oil.
3) Grapeseed Oil
Grapeseed oil is your healthy oil of choice for all kinds of cooking as it has a low saturated fat content and a high smoking point. You can readily use it for grilling, cooking, and making salads and veggies that will taste great with a mild nutty flavor.
4) Safflower Oil
Safflower oil has the highest smoke point of all the healthy oils listed, coming in at 510⁰F. It is low in saturated fats, has a neutral flavor, and provides an array of omega-9 fatty acids.
You can get safflower oil either cold-pressed or chemically processed, but both versions will have the same remarkably high smoke point. It is perfect for frying and sautéing, but not for making salads or any recipe that requires a flavorful oil.SPECIAL: This Scientific Trick Can Reduce Your Belly Fat By 8.5% in Just 12 Weeks…
5) Flaxseed Oil
Flaxseed oil is a remarkable source of Alpha-linoleic Acid (ALA), which is one of the three Omega-3 fatty acids. Flaxseed oil has also been found to reduce the symptoms of arthritis and inflammation and lower the risk of cancer.
However, flaxseed oil is counter-indicated for individuals on blood-thinners as it may increase bleeding. Moreover, flaxseed oil should not be subjected to heat as it readily oxidizes, so it is best used in cold dishes like salads.
6) Sesame Oil
Sesame oil is at the top of the AHA list of heart-healthy foods and is a perfect choice if you are looking for a healthy alternative with a flavor. If you are allergic to peanuts or do not like the flavor, you can use sesame oil instead.
What’s more, sesame oil is available as a cold-pressed version. It is mainly used to prepare Asian and Indian cuisines.
A little oil is all you need for that burst of flavor! You can use light sesame oil for stir-frying and dark sesame oil to make a dressing or sauce.
7) Avocado Oil
Avocado oil is a great source of monounsaturated fatty acids. It will, therefore, boost your good cholesterol levels and facilitate the absorption of various nutrients.
Moreover, unlike coconut oil, avocado oil has only 1.6g per tablespoon of saturated fats, which makes it a healthier alternative.
Since it has a higher smoking point (375-400⁰F) and a neutral flavor, avocado oil is excellent for high-temperature cooking. It can, therefore, be used for stir-frying, sautéing, or searing.
8) Walnut Oil
Walnut oil may be expensive, but it is worth it. It has an array of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as other beneficial nutrients.
Walnut oil is perfect for desserts and other cold dishes that will go well with a nutty flavor.
Oils To Use Cautiously
Unlike the beauty industry where coconut oil is revered, the case is different when it comes to nutrition. Coconut oil is indicated as an unsaturated oil that is solid at room temperature but has a high amount of medium-chain fatty acids that the body will find hard to convert into stored fats.
The AHA advises individuals with elevated blood cholesterol to avoid coconut oil. That is because high consumption of this oil will make it difficult to raise LDL levels back to normal.SPECIAL: These 3 Delicious Smoothie Recipes Are Specially Designed To Burn Off More Fat… So You Lose More Weight
Palm oil is another beneficial oil that you must use cautiously. It is high in saturated fats, which means that if you have diabetes, you should avoid it as part of your bid to lower your saturated fats consumption.
Partially Hydrogenated Oils
As indicated earlier, hydrogenated oils made from soybean, cottonseed, and other vegetable oils are harmful to your heart and should be eliminated from your diet. The FDA ruled that by 2018, all partially hydrogenated foods should be removed from commercial products.
Tips For Cooking With Healthy Oils
- Healthy oils are safe for stir- and shallow-frying. Deep frying is not recommended as a cooking method.
- Your healthy oil will begin to degrade as soon as it hits its smoking point. In case it smokes or catches fire, you need to toss it.
- Oil that has been stored for too long will get rancid or oxidized, and then it will get a characteristic unpleasant smell. If this happens, get rid of the oil.
- Buy your cooking oil in smaller volumes to limit waste, then store it in a cool dark place for freshness.
- Avoid reheating or reusing your cooking oil.
The information above will enlighten you on what types and varieties of oils are best for a healthy diet. You should not have to cut fats and oils out of your diet because, finally, after years of bad science and myths, a list of healthy oils is available.
The BIGGEST Reason These Oils Matter…
Has to do with something that even top doctors don’t know THAT much about yet:
Using certain oils can actually cause some serious problems.
For example, did you know that when oils get above their smoke point, they go rancid and can do a HUGE amount of damage to your gut?
Even oils that are known for being especially healthy.
It’s true… and it’s one of the most important reasons you must stick to the recommendations in the guide above.
I didn’t even know about this until an email conversation I had with Dr. Steven Masley.
Dr. Masley was consulting on our super-indulgent dessert recipes for Fit Trim Happy… and he pointed out exactly which oils to use with which recipes.
He’s been incredibly concerned with how oils that are promoted as healthy can actually become dangerous when they’re used at the wrong temperatures…
Even coconut oil, which is super popular for its health benefits.
Here’s something Dr. Masley said himself, to really emphasize how serious this is.
“Coconut oil cannot be used at high heat. It has a smoke point of only 350 degrees (F). These dishes will have highly damaged oils (I would call them toxic) if the current recipes are followed.
Use AVOCADO oil instead and put coconut oil on at the end for flavor.”-Dr. Steven Masley
As you can see, Dr. Masley was quite adamant about the damage these oils can do to your body…
And what’s not in the email above is the incredible research Dr. Masley cited as to why these damaged oils can be so toxic to your body.
And in it, he’ll show you:
- Why “rancid oils,” artificial sweeteners, and other common food ingredients will devastate your gut… and unknowingly cause you to pack on pounds…
- The 4 “Gut Superstars” that will keep your gut balanced and healthy, and able to burn food for energy as the body intended to effortlessly lose weight, and
- The only place to find all 4 of these “Gut Superstars” in one spot