Why is choosing the right cooking oil important?

For a while now, and especially in the pandemic, a healthy lifestyle has been a focus for many people. Food habits form an intrinsic part of one’s lifestyle, which is why experts advise you to add nutritious food to your plate so as to ward off diseases.

In the fast-paced life that we have all been leading, stress has become a big roadblock, which can only be countered by lifestyle changes that include food, rest and physical fitness.

Akshay Modi, Joint Managing Director, Modi Naturals, says that while it is crucial to be conscious of the food you consume and cook, the most important thing is to be able to choose the right oil. “Whether it is sautéing, deep-frying, shallow-frying, or grilling, oil is one of the most common and essential ingredients used in cooking,” he says.

Why is choosing the right oil important?

According to Modi, edible oils are a source of fat, but too much of the wrong kind can lead to risk of heart disease. There are a wide variety of oils available in the market, but not all are known to promote heart health.

Olive oil, he says, is extracted from olive fruit and is rich in healthy monounsaturated fats. It contains large amounts of antioxidants, which reduce the risk of many diseases. Olive oil has strong anti-inflammatory properties, it lowers blood pressure, protects ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol particles from oxidation, and improves the function of blood vessels.

Rice bran oil, on the other hand, is extracted from the outer bran or husk of rice grains. It has a high smoke point and is useful for high-heat cooking. This oil is a good source of vitamins E, K, and good fats like polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats. Consuming these unsaturated fats can improve blood cholesterol levels, which can decrease the risk of heart disease.

Olive oil contains large amounts of antioxidants, which reduce the risk of many diseases. (Photo: Getty/Thinkstock)

“Owing to various benefits, a blend of olive oil and rice bran oil is perfect for everyday cooking for people who are concerned about their heart health,” adds Modi.

The benefits:

1. It absorbs less oil compared to the other oils and contains essential fatty acids along with linoleic acid — scientifically known for preventing and treating diseases of the heart and blood vessels.

2. It has an extremely high smoke point that makes it excellent for frying and deep frying. This prevents fatty acid breakdown at high temperatures, thus making the food healthier.

3. It contains oryzanol, a powerful natural antioxidant that protects against heart disease by maintaining optimum cholesterol levels (reducing LDL and increasing HDL).

4. It gives the combined benefits of both rice bran oil and olive oil. Rice bran oil has been proved to be the best oil for blending due to its nutrient composition and olive oil provides heart health benefits that prevents buildup of cardiovascular diseases.

5. It  can also help prevent other lifestyle conditions such as diabetes, obesity, etc.

“According to nutritionists and cooking experts, a healthy multisource cooking oil provides the combined nutrients and boosts immunity which keeps you active throughout the day,” he concludes.

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