Yesterday, as I was working outside a man handed me a coupon and a take-out menu for a new Chinese restaurant in our neighborhood. He was touting how healthy the food was because they didn't use MSG and they used vegetable oil for all of their cooking.
I didn't want to "pop his bubble" - but if you are wanting to transition to an anti-inflammatory diet or one that is healthy for your macula - it is important to know that cooking with vegetable oil is NOT healthy.
You may find that surprising - because most of us cook and bake with vegetable oil - or in my case, used to.
Heat turns most oils into trans fats. These fats are pro-oxidative and produce free radicals which leads to aging and other degenerative diseases, like macular degeneration.
You may find that a plate of stir fried vegetables sauteed with an unstable vegetable oil at high heat may not be that healthy.
Coconut Oil Benefits
According to Jessica K. Black, N.D. in her book,The Anti-Inflammation Diet and Recipe Book,
"The damage done by oxidation of fats usually occurs when heating a relatively unstable fat. Using a monounsaturated fat such as canola oil in baking or cooking leaves the body more susceptible to oxidative damage."
This is not so when cooking with coconut oil. Coconut oil is a great oil to use for cooking and baking because it remains stable in high temperatures and for extended periods of time such as baking.
Coconut oil does not transform into dangerous trans-fatty acids and it is better than olive oil for cooking.
Coconut Oil and Cooking
Organic virgin coconut oil has replaced all of my vegetable oils for cooking. I bake breads and muffins with it, make pancakes and saute vegetables. David Wolfe writes in his book, Superfoods: The Food and Medicine of the Future, "One of the greatest pieces of information you could derive from this book is to only and exclusively use coconut oil for all your cooking needs."
I'd have to agree. It is an easy change to make without compromising on flavor and taste.
To learn more about the health benefits of coconut oil and what to look for in purchasing it for your kitchen cupboards click here:
Coconut Oil Benefits
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Leslie Degner, RN, BSN
Better Health for Better Vision