Fats and Oil.

24 06 2009

The best fats contain high levels of monosaturated vegetable oils that have never been exposed to heat or chemicals–like virgin olive oil. Use small quantities of olive oil for salad dressing.

Monosaturated fats also have far less tendency to go rancid than any other type. Vegetable oils with high proportions of unsaturated fats, the kind that all the authorities push because they contain no cholesterol, go rancid rapidly upon very brief exposure to air. The danger here is that rancidity in vegetable oil is virtually unnoticeable. Rancid animal fat on the other hand, smells “off.” Eating rancid oil is a sure-fire way to accelerate aging, invite degenerative conditions in general, and enhance the likelihood of cancer.

I recommend that you use only high-quality virgin olive oil, the only generally-available fat that is largely monosaturated. (Pearson and Shaw, 1983)

When you buy vegetable oil, even olive oil, get small bottles so you use them up before the oil has much time being exposed to air (as you use the oil air fills the bottle) or, if you buy olive oil in a large can to save money, immediately upon opening it, transfer the oil to pint jars filled to the very brim to exclude virtually all air, and seal the jars securely. In either case, keep now-opened, in-use small bottles of oil in the refrigerator because rancidity is simply the combination of oil with oxygen from the air and this chemical reaction is accelerated at warmer temperatures and slowed greatly at cold ones.

Chemical reactions typically double in speed with every 10 degrees C. increase in temperature. So oil goes rancid about six times faster at normal room temperature than it does in the fridge. If you’ll think about the implications of this data you’ll see there are two powerful reasons not to fry food. One, the food is coated with oil and gains in satiety value at the expense of becoming relatively indigestible and productive of toxemia. Secondly, if frying occurs at 150 degrees Centigrade and normal room temperature is 20 degrees Centigrade, then oil goes rancid 2 to the 13th power faster in the frying pan, or about 8,200 times faster. Heating oil for only ten minutes in a hot skillet induces as much rancidity as about 6 weeks of sitting open and exposed to air at room temperature. Think about that the next time you’re tempted to eat something from a fast food restaurant where the hot fat in the deep fryer has been reacting with oxygen all day, or even for several days.

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