Do you know what the #1 cooking fat in America is?
Nope, it isn’t butter.
Yep, according to a recent survey by the market research firm Technomic, Americans are turning away from saturated fats like butter and lard—they now prefer vegetable oils! And which oils do they use most frequently? Canola, corn, soybean, and safflower. In fact, canola oil alone accounts for nearly 16% of all fats used in US kitchens today. So let’s get this straight: the majority of people who cook with fat use vegetable oil —which is manufactured using an industrial process called “hydrogenation” that employs serious chemicals—instead of a natural substance like butter, which comes from a cow that walked around in sunlight and ate grass!
Next time you’re at the grocery store, take a look at the back of any vegetable oil bottle. Notice anything strange about the ingredients listed? Anything “hydrogenated,” perhaps? In case you didn’t know it, that means hydrogen was artificially added to our food—which is exactly how we got all those trans-fats (or as I call them: man-made fats).
Corn Oil Causes Heart Lesions?
The thing is, your body doesn’t want or need these synthetic oils or their anti-nutritionals—and neither do your cholesterol levels. Why? Let’s review: canola oil is high in omega-6 fatty acids compared to just 2% omega 3s. Omega 6 is pro-inflammatory and omega 3 is anti-inflammatory, so you’d think the ideal ratio would be somewhere around 1:1 or 2:1—but canola has a staggering 4:1 ratio! This means it’s more inflammatory than corn oil, soybean oil, safflower oil… heck, even lard has just a slightly higher omega 6 to omega 3 ratio at 5:1. Corn and soybean oils are also high in erucic acid; as little as 15 mg per day of this fat found in widely consumed corn oils like “corn oil” can cause severe heart lesions over time.
Canola (Rapeseed) oil comes from the rapeseed plant (Brassica napus), which is a relative of the mustard family. The name canola was created by the Canadian government and stands for “Canadian oil,” since this plant was first grown in Canada back in the 1970s. But rapeseed is bad news.
Now, let’s be clear: I don’t hate all vegetable oils. Extra virgin olive oil and coconut oil are both highly nutritious—not only that, they taste great too! Coconut oil has a high smoke point (350 F), making it perfect for frying, stir-frying, or baking; but when using extra virgin olive oil, just remember to keep your heat low so as not to damage its fragile nutritional structure.
Butter for High Blood Sugar Levels?
I recommend you use fats like butter (from grass-fed cows of course) as a replacement for vegetable oils. It’s loaded with beneficial nutrients like vitamins A, D, E, and K2; CLA (conjugated linoleic acid); beta carotene; and trace minerals including chromium—which actually helps to modulate your blood sugar levels. By the way, before you reach for that bag of popcorn in the microwave, did you know that 90% are doused in toxic diacetyl, which is both chemically-produced and found in concentrations up to 30 times higher than safe standards? Listen folks, industrial chemicals are not natural foods!
The Dangers of Hydrogenated Oils
But let’s get back to vegetable oil for a moment: Have you ever wondered what hydrogenation does to perfectly natural food? How about rancidity or free radical generation? Ever heard of the Trans-fats & Hydrogenation Awareness Coalition (THAC)? In this interview, THAC’s President Steve Fredrickson explains how vegetable oil is both unrecognizable to your body as food and literally bad for your health.
Oops—I seem to have gone on longer than I’d planned—sorry about that! Now let me tell you a little bit about why I wrote this article before I wrap things up. For one thing, I’ve seen an awful lot of people get sick from using these hydrogenated oils. And who wouldn’t when you take perfectly healthy olive oil or coconut oil and chemically “hydrogenate” it with a chemical process that adds hydrogen molecules in place of those missing natural fatty acid molecules? That’s right, we’ve created a whole new family of toxic fats in the process of trying to harness nature for our own consumption. And let me tell you something else: The scientists who created those man-made trans-fats knew full well what they were doing—but they did it anyway because that’s how much money was involved!
The FDA still doesn’t require food companies to list hydrogenated oils on their packaging—so most people are completely unaware they’re consuming these deadly oils every day. In fact, canola oil is so ubiquitous in this country that it could be considered an entirely new ingredient for your food! Just replace fructose with canola high omega 6 and bad cholesterol with trans-fat—then take some previously healthy populations and feed them this new “food” for a few generations—and you’ve got all the makings of an obesity epidemic.
An Informed Choice..
So, here’s what I ask you: please take the time to get educated about your food! There are a lot of great resources out there to help get you started—just do your research and you’ll be off to a great start in protecting yourself against bad advice and media hype. I mean, come on now folks—if science has known about trans-fats being so deadly since the 1950s then why didn’t we stop using them much sooner? And how come canola oil is still used in most fast food restaurants across America? It took me eight years to figure it out myself (I’m not exactly a rocket scientist!) but thankfully the solution is so easy that even you could do it!
Now remember, canola oil is not the only “vegetable” oil on the market—there are many others which have been manipulated in this same way. So please take some time right now to get informed about what you’re putting into your body every day—and stay healthy!