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Is Your Cooking Oil Healthy?

June 27, 2012

By Joan McDaniel June 24, 2012 Update June 26, 2014

As I have said before in my previous posting I have been doing a great deal of research.  This posting will discuss what I have found about Cooking Oils.  I have used several sources for this information some from the Internet other from books.  My strongest support comes from :

Dr. Bruce Fife, N.D., M.D.

Dr. Joseph Mercola

Health Ranger

and many others.

A Guide to Choosing Cooking Oils

Fat – A food-energy source. Fat has received a bad reputation in the public’s eyes for many years. There are good fats and there are bad fats. Oxidized or artificially produced fat such as; polyunsaturated vegetable oils margarine, and shortening(Crisco)  are bad and any amount and all natural fats are good.  Fat slows down the movement of food in the digestive system allowing food more time to be digested and more nutrients especially minerals are absorbed.  Low-fat diets prevent the complete digestion of food promoting mineral deficiencies, such as absorption of Calcium to prevent osteoporosis.

Fat as an energy food, gives twice as much energy as an equal weight of the other energy foods – protein and carbohydrates. There are three kinds of fat:  saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated. They are differentiated by their molecular structure.

Three types of Fat:

Saturate fat– Is a vital nutrient. It is not a poison. It is an important source of energy, it aids in the digestion process, helps the heart and other vital organs, it helps the body maintain its health.  In fact, if the body does not get saturated fat and monounsaturated fat it will make it on its own but not enough for optimal health.

This fat’s bad reputation started in the 1960s, when Dr. Ancel Keys, PhD(1904-2004) using what he called the Mediterranean diet suggested eating too much fat was unhealthy (1953).  He is known as the father of the low-fat diet.  He was with the university of Minnesota physiologist and nutritionist.   During WWII he came up with ready-to-eat provisions called Field Rations, Type K which eventually came to be known as K Rations.

Eisenhower eating Field Rations

Dr. Keys later work on eating fat and Heart disease made a great impact on the American diet. He concluded that fat elevated cholesterol causing for no known reason a buildup of plague in the arteries walls.  Known as the Cholesterol hypothesis (Diet-Health Hypothesis, and Lipid Hypothesis).

What Dr. Keys failed to study and ignore, is our previous history, our ancestors eating fat, and their  miracle survival of thousands of years before that date.  Animal fats (Lard), beef tallowbutter, cheese, chicken fat, coconut and palm oil, eggs, ghee (clarified butter), milk, mutton tallow, Nutmeg oil, Peanut Oil, Sour cream, and Vinegar were the common crucial fats used throughout the history of mankind and maintaining healthy cells, healthy organs, and a healthy body.

Update June 26, 2014

Looks like someone is finally making some sense with nutrition NO mention of coconut oil but it is a good start.

Sketchy Research Got Us Eating Low Fat Diets — And It Could Be Killing Us

13 Nutrition Lies That Made The World Sick And Fat

This is a review of a book titled Big Fat Surprise by Teicholz check out the book yourself here

This article originally appeared on Popular Science

End of Update

Sketchy Research Got Us Eating Low Fat Diets — And It Could Be Killing Us

13 Nutrition Lies That Made The World Sick and Fat


Note the Low-Fat diet is not the Atikins Low Carbohydrate Diet.  Dr. Atkins was the first Dr. that stood up against the low-fat diet and established the low-carb Atkins Diet and used the  Glycemic index. That diet and other things will be in another post right now let’s continue with a look at fats.

Polyunsaturated fat– is a fatty acid mostly found in plants, it is four or more hydrogen atoms short of saturation. Polyunsaturated fats are the absolute WORST oils to use when cooking because these omega-6 rich oils are highly susceptible to heat damage . When these fats are exposed to heat, light or oxygen they readily oxidize (to your car that means rust) and form free radicals. Our diet needs polyunsaturated fat, our bodies cannot produce this fat so they are essential that we eat them daily.  We must have some in our diet but too much can be detrimental.  Consumption exceeding 10% Omega-6 oils of total calories can lead to blood disorders, cancer, liver damage, and vitamin deficiencies.

When polyunsaturated fats or oils are heated they become known as 4-hydroxy-trans-2-nominal (4-HNE).


Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids – This category includes common vegetable oils (polyunsaturated oils) such as: Canola, Chia Seed, Cod Liver, Corn, Cottenseed, Fish Oils, Flaxseed, Hemp Seed, Herring, Lecithin,  Linseed, Menhaden (Fish Oil), Safflower, Salmon Oil, Sardine Oil, Sesame seed, Soybean, Sunflower, Vegetable Oil, and Wheat germ. Polyunsaturated fat consists of both Omega-3 and Omega-6. 

Monounsaturated fat– is two hydrogen atoms short of being a saturated fat. Olive oil is mostly Monounsaturated then ¼ saturated and polyunsaturated.


Monounsaturated Fatty Acids – Almond, Avocados, Butterfat, Grape Seed, Olive, Peanut, Pumpkin, Rapseed (canola) and, Sesame. Good source for fat but become toxic if heated.  Heating causes the oil to become oxidized

If you look at the chart below you will find the best oil to cook with is—-

High in Saturated fat, low in the others so the winner is ________________

Type of Fat and Percent Composition

Dietary Fat Fat Composition
Olive Oil 77 9 14
Canola Oil 58 36 6
Peanut Oil 49 38 13
Lard 47 12 41
Palm Oil 39 10 51
Butter 30 4 66
Margarine 48 34 18
Vegetable Shortening 43 31 26
Corn Oil 25 62 13
Soybean Oil 24 61 15
Sunflower Oil 20 69 11
Cottonseed Oil 19 54 27
Safflower Oil 12 79 9
Coconut Oil 6 2 92

And the best oil for cooking is?????

Also a little known fact is ——I don’t know who came up with the fat-free salad dressing but

Vegetables, Fruits which contain Fat-Soluble vitamins or minerals cannot be absorbed by the body unless they are eaten with fat such as oil, coconut oil or butter.  A vitamin tablet will not help for they too need fat to be absorbed by the body. Do not use Fat-Free Salad Dressing.

New Warning About Olive Oil

Posted By Dr. Mercola | September 27,  2003

Olive Oil Good for Health but Not for High heat Cooking

Researchers concluded that olive oil is a major contributing factor to the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet. While olive oil can and should be a healthy part of your diet, what most people do not appreciate is that olive oil should not be used to cook with. It should be used cold or applied to a dish after it has been cooked.  Olive oil is primarily a monounsaturated fat which when heated can easily break-down and become perishable with oxidative damage and then forms free-radicals. As it turns out, extra-virgin olive oil contains chlorophyll that accelerated decomposition and makes the oil go rancid rather quickly. So if you plan on using a fat to cook with, your clear choice is coconut oil or butter. Coconut oil is rich in lauric acid which is a proven antiviral and immune system builder.

So in evaluating plant oils for cooking, it should be clear that oils that contain a high percentage of saturated fatty acids are more stable than those that contain a high percentage of polyunsaturated fatty acids. When exposed to high heat and light during processing, storage, and use, oils that contain a high percentage of polyunsaturated fatty acids tend to contain more free radicals than oils that contain mainly saturated and/or monounsaturated fatty acids.

Olive oil can go rancid or even toxic when heated above about 374 degrees Fahrenheit (190 degrees Celsius) because it is in a class of oils with a low smoke point.” Natural news

I have found that I can add olive oil after I have cooked the food.  I also found that if I mix olive oil with coconut oil, coconut oil stays liquid.  As long as you don’t heat the olive oil it is very good for you.

Until my next post.


Update November 30, 2012

While circulating this article, there has arisen a controversy.  I am an amateur blogger, a LPN not an RN and am doing research on the Web.  I am including the link to an article which says; and I paraphrase – Cooking with Olive Oil is just fine and a video from Dr. Mercola’s web site that say just the apposite.  Note the article is dated 2010 and it’s hit count is 435,008.  This is the latest article I can find from Dr. Mercola.

So BE YOU OWN JUDGE.  I only present research, as I have said over and over I CAN NOT AND DO NOT TELL PEOPLE WHAT TO DO. Joan


I have also updated more information from Natural News:

Olive oil can go rancid or even toxic when heated above about 374 degrees Fahrenheit (190 degrees Celsius) because it is in a class of oils with a low smoke point.” Natural news

Food Myths Debunked: Cooking with Olive Oil Removes its Health Benefits

New Warning About Olive Oil

October 30, 2010 | 435,008 views

Dr. Rudi Moerck is a drug industry insider and an expert on fats and oils.

In this interview, Dr. Moerck discusses the ins-and-outs of cooking oils; the good, the bad and the ones to avoid like the plague.

Until my next post


  1. Wireless Ethernet Adapter
    I am trying to get to the bottom of the olive oil myself. I visited a new store of a man from Lebanon who is dedicated to bottling fresh Olive oil so far looking good. He will provide me test results from Culinary Institute here in New York. As we go along, I will post his site if his product is for real. There must be others who stand by their product. Just don’t buy olive oil in grocery store.

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