Most consumers today are spoiled for choice when it comes to cooking oils. Most stores (including health food stores) in the West tend to be packed with oils of various colors, tastes, and origins, and it can be difficult to distinguish the healthy ones from the unhealthy ones.
The most important factor to bear in mind when choosing oils is not just whether an oil is safe and nutritious in its unprocessed state, but also whether it remains safe and nutritious after exposure to high temperatures. Unfortunately, many oils -- including otherwise healthy oils, such as vegetable, fish oil and flax oil -- are high in polyunsaturated fats, which have a limited resistance to oxidation and rancidification, and can produce cancer-causing free radicals when heated.
However, oils that are high in saturated and monounsaturated fats tend to be both nutritious and highly resistant to heating, making them excellent choices for cooking. The best of these healthy oils are listed below.
There are many reasons why natural health experts consider Coconut oil the King of cooking oils. Aside from being one of the most stable oils at high temperatures (approximately 90 percent of its fatty acids are saturated), Pure Coconut oil is rich in Lauric acid, an especially beneficial fat with proven antimicrobial, antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties. Almost 50% of the MCTs found in coconut oil is lauric acid, a 12-carbon saturated fatty acid that our bodies convert into Monolaurin. Monolaurin is one of the natural world's greatest antiviral, antibacterial & antifungal as we all know by now!
Moreover, a study published in the journal Lipids discovered that consuming just 1 ounce of coconut oil daily could help trigger weight loss. Significantly Pure Coconut Oil seems to be especially effective at removing abdominal or "visceral" fat, which is the really nasty fat that clings to our internal organs and contributes to high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
Other healthy oils
Other healthy oils that remain healthy when heated include Avocado oil and Macadamia oil (though Macadamia oil should only be used for low- or medium-heat cooking). While not strictly oils, animal products like butter, ghee and lard are also superb cooking aids that have been part of our natural diet for centuries.