How you prepare your food is almost as important as what you eat.
I will be the first to say that not all cooking oils are created equal. If you want proof of this, try making an omelet with anything but butter.
It tastes different, obviously.
However the oils we use to cook our food can be just as healthy or unhealthy as the food itself.
Many refined vegetable oils lose their healthy antioxidants and minerals during the refining process. Butter is high in saturated fat, which can raise your cholesterol. Margarine contains saturated fat, as well as trans-fatty acids, which come with their own health risks.
READ MORE: How to Avoid Vegetable Bloat
If you are looking to find a healthier way to prepare your food, oils that come from large nuts or seeds are your best bet, as they retain the most nutrients. Here are the top three:
Extra-Virgin Olive Oil- Derived from olive berries, extra-virgin olive oil contains large amounts of antioxidants, vitamins, and phytosterols. It is the least processed of the oils, and can reduce bad cholesterol and minimize the damage from free radicals.
Coconut Oil- Coconut oil has a higher concentration of saturated fat, but it also contains lauric acid, to help lower bad cholesterol. This oil is high in medium-chain triglycerides, which helps the body convert fat into energy.
Avocado Oil- Avocado oil is low in saturated fat, high in monounsaturated fats and antioxidants, and contains vitamin E. It also contains carotenoids, which help prevent certain cancers, and eye disease.
When you love to cook, I find it’s always a fine line between great flavor, and healthy ingredients.
Choosing the right cooking oil is one small way you can make a healthy change with lasting benefits.