There are many ways to maximize oils nutritive value in cooking and each method is essential. Aside from choosing oils based on the fatty acids missing or insufficient in your overall diet plan, using oils moderately especially oils that are high in omega-6 fatty acid is crucial while observing both hygiene safety and beneficial culinary methods suitable for different types of oils considering their smoke point analysis is also vital. In this article, we will share a few savvy culinary tips

  • When cooking,(not deep-frying) always keep this at the back of your mind, oils are only a flavouring in your food and not a major ingredient so use sparingly.
  • Excessive heat destroys oils especially oils with low or medium smoke points, such as walnut, flaxseed, extra virgin olive oil, etc. If possible oils should be added towards the end of your cooking to ensure the nutrients in such oils are not completely destroyed.
  • Ensure to maximize culinary oils in every recipe by using the right oil with the right smoke point for each cooking method. For example: For high-temperature cooking, select cooking oils with a high smoke point such as groundnut oil, avocado oil, moringa oil, coconut seed oil, etc. For low temperature cooking select oils with medium smoke point such as soya bean oil, palm oil, virgin olive oil, and for cold dishes (salads, smoothies) and salad dressings, chose oils with a higher Omega-3 and or omega 9 fatty acids such as extra virgin olive oil, walnuts oil, flaxseed oil, etc.
  • Avoid destroying nutrients in your palm oil by bleaching the oil. Palm oil is often bleached to give a pale colour in the absence of groundnut oil. Sadly, this process does not only destroy nutrients in the oil but it also potentially puts one’s health at risk. When oils are cooked beyond their smoke point they turn to trans-fats which are not healthy. Continuing ingestion may influence the mutation of healthy cells into diseased cells. Palm oil possesses that reddish colour because of the nutrients (betacarotene) it contains and will offer your body if it is not destroyed.

We all have a responsibility to make wise and informed choices each day about the food we buy and eat. These tips are your ally to safer dieting so use them generously.

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