Posts tagged ‘vegetable oils’

COOKING IN A VARIETY OF OILS!!

Sticking to the old ideology of completely cutting out on oils for reducing weight or in conditions of heart, are all passé. Researches have come up with conclusive results on how oils are as important a component of good health as any other nutrient. The mantra today by the experts is ‘BLENDING OILS’ rather than ‘ÉXCLUSIVE OILS’, for maximum health benefits.

Blending oil means cooking your entire day’s meal in a variety of oils, balancing them in a way, which would complement the requirements of your body and the meal being prepared. For instance not every dish can be prepared in mustard oil given to it’s pungent flavour, at the same time it has a very good balance of MUFA(monounsaturated fatty acid) and PUFA (polyunsaturated fatty acid; n-6 and n-3).

Oil blends help attain the healthy n-6 and n-3 ratio, PUFA, MUFA requirements by the body which significantly affect lowering of LDL (bad cholesterol) , triglycerides and subsequent increase in HDL(good cholesterol).

Some oils are high in n6 and others in n3. So it’s a good idea to blend oils to get optimum health benefits. Some of the ratios worked out for oil use are:

Groundnut: Soyabean :: 2:1

Mustard: Sesame ::3:1

Sunflower: Groundnut ::1:1

Sesame: Soyabean ::2:1

Dietary sources of MUFAs include olive, canola oils, avocados, peanuts, nuts and seeds. One of the main forms of PUFAs is fish oil, which have been shown to deliver considerable benefits for cardiovascular health and cognitive function. N-6 is also essential for human health, found in grains, most plant-based oils, poultry, and eggs. So, what you need to do is simply follow the guide below… mix and match the oils as per your requirements, rather than stick to the regular ones.

MUSTARD OIL

  • Good balance of MUFA and PUFA but has a pungent flavour also.
  • Goes well with fish.

CANOLA OIL

  • A favorite of nutritionist claims to have the ability to lower the risk of heart disease.
  • Very low in saturated fat and a good source of n-3 and MUFA.
  • Has the best fatty acid composition (good fat vs. bad fat) when compared to other oils

RICE BRAN OIL

  • Rich in antioxidants besides n-3 , can be combined with safflower oil and used.
  • Overall a proportionate oil with a good balance of PUFA(n-3 and n-6) and MUFA.
  • Not easily available in India though.

OLIVE OIL

  • Olive oil’s distinct flavor, combined with its portfolio of heart-healthy ingredients, makes it one of today’s most popular oils.
  • Rich in MUFA and contains anti-oxidants and polyphenols that are good for the heart.
  • Olive oil has a rich olive flavor that can complement a variety of cold and warm sauces, marinades and salad dressings.

SOYABEAN OIL

  • High in n-3 fatty acid.
  • Great source of Vit-E.
  • Used for frying and sautéing
  • Works best with Indian dishes that already include flavour spices as the oil in itself is quite bland.

SUNFLOWER OIL

  • Low in sat fat and has a good dose of Vit-E.
  • Has a very high PUFA content, can be atherogenic(potential cause of atherosclerosis) .
  • Works best when blended with n-3 rich oils (like groundnut) for a healthy mix.

To conclude, a combination of oils is for a balanced and varied diet. Whatever said and done oils still are high in fat and calories. To that end, mix it up based on taste and the dish that you’re cooking. Remember: A little goes a long way, so use only what you need. Lets start with reading the nutrition facts (label) of the oil you are consuming!!

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July 8, 2008 at 11:59 am Leave a comment


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