Oils are products, which are more and more often hosted on the tables, also among people who have little idea about healthy eating. And that's good, because oils can be a source of healthy fatty acids, which can support the work of the whole body, as well as positively affect the condition of the skin and hair.
More and more often on store shelves you can find oils such as black cumin oil, evening primrose oil or pumpkin seed oil. So what distinguishes these products and is it worth reaching for them?
What are oils?
Oils are usually sources of healthy unsaturated fatty acids, which are becoming increasingly available.
These include monounsaturated fatty acids, which contain one double bond between carbon atoms, as well as polyunsaturated fatty acids, which have more than one double bond.
The oils also include vitamins and minerals, as well as sterols and phospholipids
Why is it worth using oils?
Vegetable oils are usually a source of unsaturated fatty acids, including essential fatty acids (EFAs), such as omega-3 or omega-6, which must be supplied to the body with food, because the body is not able to synthesize them on its own.
Unsaturated fatty acids can have a positive effect on the human body, i.a. by having a beneficial effect on the lipid profile or supporting the proper functioning of the heart and circulatory system. In addition, these compounds can take care of the good condition of the skin, hair and nails, and support the functioning of the nervous system. As if that was not enough, EFAs can also act anti-inflammatory.
Healthy oils can support the body's work and reduce the risk of developing many diseases, and can also enrich the taste of dishes and dishes, which are hosted every day on our tables.
The aroma of dishes may vary slightly depending on the oil used, which means that a small change, in the form of the use of a different fat, can affect the variety of daily meals and change the taste of the dish.
Not without significance is also the fact that along with oils we can provide a portion of valuable vitamins and minerals to the daily menu.
What oils are the healthiest?
It is difficult to clearly determine which oil is the healthiest, because each of the available fats is distinguished by slightly different properties and taste.
However, it can be concluded that the most beneficial effect on the human body can have vegetable oils that are a source of essential fatty acids.
The healthiest can therefore be considered oils such as.:
- Linseed oil - which is a source of fatty acids from the omega-3 and omega-6 family, which can support metabolism, as well as support the work of the nervous and digestive systems. It can also contain significant amounts of vitamin E, referred to as the vitamin of youth, and thus can positively affect the condition of the skin, hair and nails.
- Black seed oil - may contain up to 85% of unsaturated fatty acids, as well as vitamins such as vitamin A or E. Black seed oil can also be a wealth of antioxidants and microelements. It can strengthen the body's immunity, have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects and also have a positive effect on lowering blood glucose levels.
- Evening primrose oil - may contain over 80% of essential fatty acids, as well as many minerals such as zinc, magnesium or selenium and vitamins such as vitamin E. Evening primrose oil can have a beneficial effect on lipid metabolism, as well as strengthen immunity and support digestive processes in the body.
- Hemp oil - as the only one among the available oils, it can contain essential fatty acids such as acids from the omega 3 and omega 6 families in an ideal ratio of 3:1. Hemp oil can support metabolism, as well as positively affect memory and concentration. In addition, it can support the work of the circulatory system.
- Olive oil - One of the most popular vegetable fats, which can also be a great source of unsaturated fatty acids. At the same time, olive oil can support the work of the nervous system and the condition of the cardiovascular system, as well as have a positive effect on vision. It can also be a source of fat-soluble vitamins, such as vitamin A, D, E and K, as well as support the body's cleansing and digestive processes.
- Rapeseed oil - widely available, it is distinguished by a wealth of beneficial fatty acids and valuable nutrients. Rapeseed oil can contain almost 10 times more omega-3 fatty acids than olive oil. In addition, in its composition you can find significant amounts of vitamin E, antioxidants and polyphenols. Rapeseed oil can delay the aging process of the body, as well as reduce oxidative stress. It can also support brain function and have a positive effect on lipid metabolism.
It is also worth paying attention to the controversial coconut oil which, although it contains saturated fatty acids, can positively affect the health and proper functioning of the body, because it is a source of MCT, i.e. medium-chain fatty acids, and not long-chain fatty acids, as in the case of zoonotic fats. Coconut oil can digest slightly differently, which can be an easily accessible source of energy. In addition, it may increase the feeling of satiety or have antibacterial activity.
The best solution to provide the body with valuable unsaturated fatty acids is to use several types of oils alternately on a daily basis.
Oils - how to use them?
Oils can be consumed directly, e.g. one teaspoon a day to support the health and work of the whole body or use them when preparing a variety of dishes and products. It is also a good idea to use them in everyday skin and hair care.
It is worth remembering that not every oil is suitable for frying. Unrefined oils, i.e. raw, cold-pressed oils, can be destroyed and oxidized under the influence of heat treatment, which can lead to the formation of free radicals and carcinogenic substances.
Therefore, do not fry on oils, such as incl. sunflower oil, grape seed oil, evening primrose oil or linseed oil. For heat treatment, it is best to choose rapeseed oil.
Unrefined oils can work primarily as additives to salads, sauces or dressings.
In turn, oils, which can be subjected to heat treatment can enrich the taste of various baked or fried dishes, as well as cakes.