Fat is good for you!
Fats are the building blocks of your cell walls and are very important for your good health, longevity and resilience. What makes a fat good? The most important thing is that fat is not destroyed by processing, heat, chemicals, light or exposure to air. No refined oils are good fats. You would not build a house with crooked bricks so don’t ask your body to try to build your cells with destroyed oils.
Some fats can tolerate more heating than others while some should not be used for cooking at all (see below for details). Oils like canola are often processed with chemicals that can remain in the oils (hexane gas) and should be avoided. Always purchase un-refined, organic oils. This is the most important place to spend the extra money on the organic option because fats store toxins and non-organic options can deliver fat soluble toxins into your cells that are difficult to remove.
While the majority of your fats should consist of long chain omega 3 rich fatty acids, a variety of fats have beneficial qualities. Animal fats can have highly beneficial qualities. However, when an animal (fish, cow pig, or chicken) is fed a diet full of pro-inflammatory grains, soy and toxic chemicals from pesticides, antibiotics and poor quality feed, the fat of that animal is destroyed. Grass fed, wild caught animal fat is best.
Use a variety of oils that are appropriate for the cooking situation (see below). Store fats away from light and heat. Oils highest in omega 3s like flax, walnut or unrefined canola are very unstable and should be kept in dark containers in the fridge (and bought from there). Olive is more stable because of it’s high antioxidant content. It is mostly omega 9, but has a low flash point so it should not be over heated. Mixing fats while cooking can help stabilize them (mix ghee, sesame, coconut with olive oil if you are going to heat it).
- Do not heat, store in fridge – flax, un-processed or cold processed canola, or soy bean oil, walnut oil, hemp seed oil, perilla seed.
- Salad dressing or cooking – corn, peanut, olive (heat carefully one time only, consider mixing with other stable oils), almond, avocado.
- Safe for frying – coconut, palm, lard, tallow, high oleic safflower and sunflower seed oil, sesame, ghee.
- All oils are a combination of omega’s
- Reduce omega 6 found in highest quantity in soybean oil, corn, cottonseed, regular safflower and sunflower
- Avoid chemical processing and pesticides such as in canola, soybean, cottonseed (especially in round up ready gmo’s because of their increased pesticide content).
- Oils with GLA – Back Current, Borage, Evening Primrose
- High Omega 9 oils – olive, goose, duck, lard (pig)
- Know Your Fats is a book that goes into great detail about all this!
- Coconut oil is a great oil to cook with that contains antimicrobial lauric acid, found in breast milk