Weight Loss NHS
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Types of oil

What type of oil is the healthiest to use?

Coconut?

Olive?

Vegetable?

Sunflower?

31 Replies
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Why do you want to know?

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I like cooking curries and meat based meals, and a lot of the recipes demand oil. I was just wondering which is the healthiest to use so I can substitute

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You may like coconut oil? I bought some in a spray bottle so I can carefully keep check of the quantity 😊

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Lard, especially free-range. Nice and stable, resistant to oxidising, the ratio of MUFA to SFA is close to our own body-fat that nature decreed we should have.

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Different oils react in different ways and have different tastes, I like the flavour of olive oil but as it doesn’t cope well at high temperatures I use a vegetable oil (usually rape seed oil) for general frying.

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I use rape for high temps but OH hates the smell, so I'm on my own there. Then again, I remember a time when she didn't like Olive oil either :)

Like you say Indigo, horses for courses.

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Coconut the healthiest then olive oil the others you should not touch they increase a inflammatory state in your body. They are called PUFAs and very bad for you. I can give you links if your interested

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Please, I’d appreciate that

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This is in complete contradiction to current NHS advice. I hope you can substantiate it?

nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/#...

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A position statement from the trainers of the the trainers of the Healthier You NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme Anna xperthealth.org.uk/Portals/...

Peer reviewed evidence that current advice may not be based on the highest standards of evidence openheart.bmj.com/content/2...

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PUFAs are unsaturated vegetable oils, here is a link.

raypeat.com/articles/articl...

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Is that a scientific study Simba1992? I don’t see any peer reviews etc

We need to be very careful giving out advice that is in complete contradiction to current NHS advice

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If you look at the abundance of research that is listed after the article you should really not doubt the knowledge about vegetable oils.

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I'll put my foot in it but has the listed research been critically appraised ? I see that all the references listed are more than 20 years old, which to me seems to indicate that more research need to be done and certainly an update.

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Don't put your head in the sand.

bmj.com/content/353/bmj.i15...

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Below is a link to information from the BBC programme "Trust me I'm a doctor" it's not published research as far as I know and it was a small study so it should not be taken as hard evidence, but it does seem to be have results which may be useful in choosing oils because (again as far as I know) the Government advice was issued before anyone realised changes happen to oils when we heat them. I found it useful in making a choice whilst waiting for more robust evidence to be available. You may find it useful too if you are looking at different sources to help make your own decision.

bbc.co.uk/programmes/articl...

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The Weston A Price Foundation, and Atkins, were warning about oxidised polyunsaturates last century. I'm not suggesting for one minute we should then accept the claims at face value, but it should have been investigated instead of the usual response that there isn't any evidence and our guidelines are based on the weight of evidence, subject to higher standards of scrutiny, all singing, all dancing, infallible...

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The article is written by a very knowledgeable doctor in biochemistry. The facts that he presents are findings that have been presented in very dependable research. It is only recently that these facts concerning vegetable oils have been presented to the public in the US where the culprit had earlier been seen in sugar. Why this has not done before has very much to do with economy, the interests of food industry where these oils are used in processed foods. I will look up some more links if you haven't found them yourself there is really a lot of them to be found on internet.

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Here is another link describing why seed oils are not good for us.

alexfergus.com/blog/pufa-s-...

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Thank you Simba1992 and Fran182716

This is complete news to me! Such a complicated area. 😕

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I think the problem is IndigoBlue61 the government and the NHS are slow to change their advice anyway, and to be fair if they're going to change their official advice they need to be sure of what they're saying. In an ideal world there'd be enough funding to get this research replicated enough to produce sufficient consistent results that would become irrefutable evidence. Then the guidelines would have to change.

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Exactly, it can seem painfully slow to change but they have to be sure

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I’m sorry you are stressing out over all this! A little oil here or there not as important as eating lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. 😊

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Hi G1nny, not sure if that reply was to me or the original poster, I'm not stressed about it, quite happy with my choice of butter or olive oil. I only use a little anyway 😀

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It was meant for the original poster, I’m like you I use olive oil and butter and I’m happy.

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Most of the time I use olive oil for sautéed veggies but it does have a taste , grape seed oil is very high temp before it burns. I’ve had no luck with coconut oil. In other words, I can’t answer your question. Sorry

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as you can see WiktoriaSzyja there isn't consensus about which oils are best. I've read a fair bit into it and while I can't draw any concrete conclusions (hard to find all singing and all dancing infallible evidence lol) I have come to my own decisions about it, based on the stuff I've read -

Cooking at high temps- there seems to be strong indication that it's not ideal to cook at high temps in the first place.. but if we do then we want an oil or fat that won't oxidize or break down into toxic components. The fats best for the job seem to be coconut oil, animal fat and even butter/ghee. These stay the most stable at high temps.

Lower temps / adding without heating e.g. after baking or to veg as a dressing - there are some studies that lend credence to the idea of Olive oils (extra virgin namely) and non roasted seed oils having health benefits. If you want to dress a salad, I believe some Olive oil is a nice choice. There are those who say these oils are unnecessary and even harmful but to my mind a little moderate Olive oil is healthy - based on the overall evidence.

Oils in their natural state- I'm of the mind that oils in their natural state - in fish, avocado, nuts, seeds and even meats and dairy are the healthiest fats to consume. While I have my reservations about inflammatory responses caused my mainly animal products, I still think unprocessed fat poses less threat than processed.

Just my own personal conclusions based on lots of complicated and contradictory stuff.

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I think that is a very good reply HappyBeee :)

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I agree lucigret , HappyBeee just did an excellent job of summing up the best advice based on what we do know 😀

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Yes, I also have changed to cooking stir fries and fish etc with coconut oil now instead of olive oil. I use olive oil for salads but no longer with heat as I think the chemical structure of olive oil is altered with heat and it's not as healthy.

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It was meant for the original poster, I’m like you I use olive oil and butter and I’m happy.

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