Fat is not a bad word, however not all fats are equal. High-quality fats are essential to our diets for many reasons. Among many other functions they:
- Provides our body with a source of energy
- Increases satiety
- Makes our food taste better
- Are the building blocks for hormones and cell production
- Serve as a protective lining for the organs of the body
- Aide in the absorption of vitamins A, D, E, and K.
However, many fats can turn rancid quickly. When an oil is exposed to air, light or heat, fat molecules can degrade in nature and leave free radicals floating about in our body. Free radicals attack molecules in our body, leading to cell damage. Antioxidants from our diet fight against free radicals in the body. However when we have an imbalance or more free radicals than we do antioxidants in our body, we are left with oxidative stress. Studies have shown correlation between oxidative stress and many inflammatory diseases such as arthritis and lupus, heart disease, hpertesnion, gastric ulcers, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s or even artheriosclerosis.
Oil can turn rancid just from being in light-colored plastic bottles on the grocery store shelf or getting too hot and to the oils smoking point when being used for cooking. However, consuming fattty acids in a safe and well prepared way is vital to our body.
Most oils consist of a combination of Saturated, Monounsaturated and Polyunsatrated fats. However, they will be higher in one that others. Below are some examples of healthy fats and how to consume and prepare properly.
BEST OIL AND FATS FOR COOKING IN HIGH HEAT
Oils that are typically best for cooking in high heat are highest in saturated fats.
BEST OIL AND FATS FOR LOW OR NO HEAT COOKING
Fats with a high concentration of monounsaturated fats are best to be cooked at a low heat or consume raw.
BEST FATS TO CONSUME RAW
Most Polunsaturated fats should be consumed raw.