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Choose the right cooking oil to stay healthy

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Making small changes in cooking ingredients can make it easier to follow a healthy diet, while reducing the effort needed

By N. Lothungbeni Humtsoe

June 9, 2021 (IANSlife) In the midst of the pandemic, a healthy diet can help to boost your immunity, aiding protection from various diseases.

However, making healthy food a part of your diet can be difficult, due to several reasons. For instance, snacking has increased considerably during the present lockdown, not only at evening chai breaks, but also in between meals to power through the day. Given the paucity of time, we end up looking for options that need less effort. While we all know that it is necessary for us to make mindful choices in current times, juggling between work-from-home and family duties makes it difficult to put health first.

Making small changes in daily cooking can go a long way in making your diet healthy, without adding any extra burden on you. An easy step is to use the right cooking oil. You may ask, why cooking oil?

If you think about it, cooking oil is one of the ingredients, which we probably use while cooking almost every meal, and among all options, it carries highest calorie per gram. In effect, using the right cooking oil can make every meal a bit healthier. Now when we think of cooking oil, the first thing that comes to our mind is to reduce the usage of oil, however just that might not be sufficient.

 

Infographics

 

Nutritionist Nmami Agarwal breaks it down.

Cooking oils are fats, and just like protein, carbohydrates, and vitamins, are very important macronutrients. Cooking oil typically consists of 3 types of Fatty Acids: Monounsaturated Fatty Acid (MUFA), Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid (PUFA) and Saturated Fatty Acid (SFA). As per guidelines from National Institute of Nutrition, healthy oils should have a good balance of all three fatty acids. Most single seed cooking oils available in India which we normally use, are unfortunately rich in either MUFA or PUFA.

This is the reason doctors and nutritionists ask you to keep changing your oil. But unfortunately, just alternating between different oils without understanding the fatty acid ratios of individual oil will not help you get the benefit you seek.

A great way to get the right balance of MUFA and PUFA easily, is to use blended oils. Blending is a scientific process that cannot be achieved at home by just mixing oils; the oils are carefully chosen in ratios that are scientifically tested, so that we get the benefits of individual oils as well as the right fatty acid profile. These oils offer a lot of health benefits.

Blended oils combine the benefits of two oils, to provide a synergistic effect, which helps to build immunity. It is also great for your heart health, as it helps reduce bad cholesterol (LDL) and increase good cholesterol (HDL). They also have a high smoke point making it ideal for all types of cooking (frying, sauteing, etc.). Some of them also come with LoSorb Technology that help food absorb lesser oil, keeping it light on your stomach. There are many options of blended oils available in the market like Saffola, helping with heart health and overall health.

 

 

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N. Lothungbeni Humtsoe can be contacted at lothungbeni.h@ians.in