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Olive Oil V Coconut Oil

Olive Oil V Coconut Oil

on Monday, 30 June 2014. posted in nutrition

Olive oil vs Coconut oil- Coconut Oil is high in saturated fat, so in the past was labeled 'bad', but in the last couple of years it has been back on the 'healthy list'. The evidence and research is certinally behind Olive Oil being a very healthy oil to include in the diet. So I mostly use Olive oil, but different oils have their rightful place in the pantry.

For example:

Flaxseed Oil: A healthy oil, but if you cook with it these benefits are destroyed.
Olive Oil: Another healthy oil on its own and also and great for cooking. Evidence shows it is the healthiest choice for heart, brain and overall health, and this is shown through proper research
Coconut Oil: has a nice place in the kitchen, as it has different flavour. I like to sometimes use coconut oil to add a different taste to stir fries or it is great for frying up some homemade potato chips, stir-frying Asian greens or other veggies, in curries , to make homemade sweets , etc. 

But I mostly use Extra Virgin Olive Oil day to day as it has the benefit of antioxidants, and research suggests it is the oil with the most health benefits. Olive oil contains monounsaturated fat, which is a ‘healthy’ fat which can help reduce heart disease, lower cholesterol levels and have other health benefits when they replace saturated fats in the diet. I use it as dressings on salads, for cooking vegetables, fish and lean meats, roasting, in slow cookers , etc. 

In terms of what you may hear that ‘olive oil is bad for you because it is not stable and is heat sensitive’ yes, olive oil will oxidise and go rancid eventually, but to avoid this it comes in dark bottles to avoid sunlight, it is recommended to be stored in a cool dark place, and is also recommended to be used within a few months before this happens. Like other healthy foods, it is better fresher!

Coconut oil will oxidise and go rancid too, it will take longer to do it. As nutrition expert Tim Crowe says; ‘It’s like arguing that UHT (long life) milk is ‘better’ because it has a longer shelf life compared to fresh milk.’

The smoke point of extra virgin olive oil (the temperature where it smokes and where nasty chemicals are produced) is around the same as unrefined natural coconut oil. It is only the refined coconut oil that has a higher smoke point - which is similar to ‘extra light olive oil’ which is also very heat stable. The key message is to cook your foods fresher, and not fry them in very heated oils for long periods of time. 

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