The best type of cooking oils for cardiac patients!

25 May 2021 Zydus Healthcare

Top oils that keep heart healthy!

Do you love to spur on yummy deep-fried meals but worried about cholesterol? You are not alone. The good thing is that we can ensure optimum levels of cholesterol without compromising on food.

Cholesterol is an organic molecule that helps our body make hormones, cell membranes and Vitamin D. It comes in our blood from two sources – food that we eat and is naturally produced by our liver. Cholesterol is important for our body as it serves three main functions:

  • Cholesterol aids in the production of sex hormones
  • It is a building block for human tissues
  • It assists in bile production in the liver

Though cholesterol is good for our overall wellbeing, its excess can be lethal. High cholesterol can plaque the arteries and cause stroke by reducing the blood flow. Following a healthy lifestyle and eating habits can help maintain cholesterol levels. People who do not wish to compromise on their favorite food can have them cooked in heart-healthy oils.

What is heart-healthy oil? 

Heart-healthy oils are the ones that contain poly and mono-unsaturated fats. These oils are plant-based, helpful in reducing the risk of heart diseases, and contain omega-3 fatty acids.

Here is a list of oils that are good for the health of the heart and body.

Top oils that keep heart healthy

1. Olive Oil : Olive oil is considered the best oil to maintain a heart-healthy lifestyle. People prefer to use extra virgin olive oil daily as it is extracted without using any chemical. It is used for cooking and also sometimes raw on salads, bread and pasta. Compared to any other oil, olive oil has a higher amount of good saturated fat in it. This good saturated fat helps in lowering bad cholesterol from your body, thereby keeping your heart healthy. It helps in producing good cholesterol in the body. Olive oil has the lowest smoke point and is beneficial in expanding the blood vessel. Many healthcare professionals suggest using four tablespoons of virgin olive oil in their diet for good heart health.

2. Avocado Oil : Avocado oil is rich in healthy monounsaturated fat that helps in controlling the bad cholesterol in the body. Avocado oil, according to researches, is rich in nutrients. It has a neutral flavor which is preferable for baking. As avocado oil has a high smoke point compared to olive oil, it can also be used for cooking at high temperatures. The nutritional values of avocado oil are not destroyed even in high temperatures. You can safely include avocado oil in your diet for a healthy heart.

3. Canola Oil : Canola oil is extracted from rapeseed and is rich in healthy monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat. However, it has only seven percent of saturated fat. Canola oil can be used for baking, cooking and frying as it has a high smoke point. It has a neutral flavor. Even with the low level of trans-fat, canola oil is considered a healthy cooking oil to maintain a healthy heart.

4. Walnut Oil : Walnut oil contains Omega-3 fat. It is a great source of alpha-linolenic acids, a type of omega-3 acid, which is of great benefit for maintaining cholesterol levels in the body. However, walnut oil has a low smoke point and is not preferable for cooking. It can be used raw on salads to enhance the taste. As walnut oil has a nutty flavor, it is widely used in desserts and other dishes.

5. Flaxseed Oil : Flaxseed is rich in Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids. Omega-6 fatty acids found in flaxseed oil reduce the chances of heart attack, strokes and early death due to heart problems. Omega-3 is considered helpful in treating cancer and symptoms of arthritis.

6. Sesame Oil : Sesame oil is also called heart-healthy cooking oil. Its antioxidant properties reduce the chances of cardiovascular diseases. Sesame oil has anti-inflammatory properties which help in breaking down Atherosclerosis.

7. Sunflower Oil : Sunflower oil is approved by AHA as heart-healthy oil as it contains high unsaturated fat. The low saturated fat levels make it good for daily cooking. Sunflower oil is very great for reducing bad cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the human body. It is also full of Vitamin E and it is recommended to be consumed at least one tablespoon everyday.

Opting for heart healthy cooking oils, depending on your taste or preferences in your routine allows you to enjoy delicious meals as well as takes care of your health. Apart from eating healthy, daily exercising can also ensure low cholesterol levels.

References: Heart Foundation


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