5 Best Cooking Oils to Fight Inflammation
When it comes to healthy eating, a lot of it relies on not just what you’re eating, but how you’re cooking it. Many foods in a Standard American Diet are fried in trans fats, or the oils are cooked well above their smoke point to the carcinogen category.
An individual oil's smoke point may be impacted by a number of factors, including chemical structure, processing method, and storage length, which is why it isn't always so straightforward.
In all honesty, it can get really overwhelming trying to figure out what oils are good for you, and what should be left on the shelf, but that’s no fault of your own.
Getting easy, understandable information about nutrition is hard, even when it comes to something as simple as cooking oil. Here are 5 of the best you can use to fight inflammation.
1. Olive Oil
Olive oil is high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are great for heart health. Besides being full of these beneficial fats, it's also a good source of antioxidants. Both of these reasons are why it's been linked in countless scientific studies to reducing inflammation. Olive oil makes a great everyday cooking oil because it actually has a high smoke point, which not everyone realizes.
Many well-backed studies have confirmed the stability of extra virgin olive oil during cooking, and even more importantly, they've really pushed the oil to its extremes. They repeatedly heat the oils, heat them for long periods of time, and take them up to extremely high temperatures. These elements would almost never happen in a home kitchen, so the fact that extra virgin olive oil stands up in these tests proves that its safe and healthy to cook at home.
2. Avocado Oil
You probably already know how nutrient-rich avocados are. But much of the fruit's nutrients can actually be found in avocado oil too. Similar to olive oil, avocado oil is high in unsaturated fats, linked to lowering inflammation, which is ultimately a win for the body.
3. Walnut Oil
Scientific studies have found that consuming walnut oil regularly not only helps lower inflammation, because of the healthy fatty acids present, it's also shown to keep blood sugar levels steady. The nut itself is especially good for heart health, so the health benefits of this oil make perfect sense.
4. Pumpkin Seed Oil
Scientific studies have also linked regular consumption of pumpkin seed oil to lowering inflammation because it is also high in all of the amazing unsaturated fats and antioxidants that your body craves. It's also been linked to helping prevent type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and certain types of cancer, all diseases linked to inflammation in the body.
5. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is one of the best additions to any wholefoods pantry (or beauty cabinet for that matter). The largest portion of fat in coconut oil comes from a healthy saturated fat called lauric acid which has been proven to encourage your body to burn fat and also raise HDL (good) cholesterol in your blood, which may help reduce heart disease risk. And most importantly, when it comes to cooking, coconut oil is resistant to oxidization at high temperatures which makes it a great stable oil to cook with. These are just some of the reasons we love it for cooking, and why it features so frequently in our staple Clean Eating Program. Plus, the delightfully fragrant flavor makes it ideal for any Asian-inspired dishes.
While navigating the kitchen can be a fun experience, it can now be a stress-free one too.
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