Cooking might be therapy for a lot of us–loving to experiment with new healthy ingredients and surprising ourselves with flavours that occupy our plates. But there’s an essential part of cooking that a majority of us consider less significant – Cooking Oils. Regardless of what style of food you like to cook, you will always have a jar of cooking oil peeping from your kitchen cabinet. Cooking oils make for an indispensable part of the cooking process. Undeniably, they also add flavours to your meals. Let alone flavours, cooking oils are also linked to lowering your risk of heart problems. Surprised right? Some of the best cooking oils for heart are often the most underrated.
Factually speaking, India has one of the highest burdens of cardiovascular disease (CVD) worldwide. This makes it even more essential to choose the most heart healthy oils.
Visit any supermarket and you will find dozens of oils to choose from, so we wouldn’t argue that the expansive selection of oils can be confusing.
This begs the question – how to choose the best cooking oil for heart? Sit back, we will do the heavy-lifting for you.
Understanding why cholesterol-free oils matter
Oils are a form of fat and science says, our bodies need fat for energy, digestion, vitamin absorption, and various other vital functions in the body. The fact is too much of the wrong kind of fat (read oil) can lead to heart problems. Here’s what you must know about cooking oils:
- Smoke point: When you heat a cooking oil, it reaches its smoke point, especially when it’s heated at a high temperature. Oil is no longer stable at this point and begins to break down. After the oil reaches its breaking point, it begins to oxidize and releases free radicals. These free radicals can have harmful effects on your body.
- Types of fat: Cooking oils contain three types of fat: saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated. American Heart Association (AHA) recommends monounsaturated and polyunsaturated for a healthy heart.
An AHA approved list of heart healthy cooking oils
According to AHA, these promising cooking oils, are a sure-shot way to a healthy heart
Canola oil is a vegetable-based oil, with 63% monounsaturated fat. It is also a popular cholesterol lowering oil.
Made mostly of polyunsaturated omega-6 fats, corn oil is proven to lower the risk factors for heart disease. It also has a very high smoke point, therefore being popular as a ‘healthy frying oil’.
One of your heart’s favorite oils is undoubtedly olive oil. Proudly known as the elixir of youth and health, it has the highest percentage of monounsaturated fat among all edible plant oils. In fact, clinical results have shown that consuming more than half a tablespoon of virgin olive oil a day may lower heart disease risk.
To your surprise, peanut oil is trans fat-free, cholesterol free, and low in saturated fats, by its nature. It’s high in monounsaturated fat and is also a source of the antioxidant Vitamin E, which is beneficial for your heart’s health.
Abundant in the ‘good’ unsaturated fats, makes soybean oil a great choice for lowering your risk of heart problems and reducing hypertension.
Naturally extracted from sunflower seeds, this golden and healthy oil is cholesterol-free and contains more than 80% of monounsaturated fat which makes it the best cooking oil for heart.
So, the next time you liberally splash oil on that pan, make sure it’s a healthy one. Also, no matter your choice, the oil should be used in moderation, since all oils are high in calories and primarily fat.
You can make another heart-smart choice by including a supplement like TrueBasics Heart Omega-3 in your daily routine. It is formulated with clinically researched Superba Krill Oil, which is proven to improve Omega 3 levels in just 30 days, and thus reducing the risk of heart issues. Also, Krill oil being a phospholipid based oil, ensures better absorption of omega-3s in the cells that are needed for essential functions.