Fats and Oils
I want to thank all of you for your
interest in my web work and for your support over the last year.
It has been my intent for some years to start a program of weekly
suggestions for health improvement that everyone (or almost everyone)
can implement with a minimum of fuss.
So, I am starting off 2003 with the proposal that
people who are seeking short cuts to good health start with oil.
In the U.S., food is generally described as protein, fat, or carbohydrates
(I said U.S. because while there is no real controversy over these
groups, there are other ways of classifying foods.) Most people
obtain about a third of their calories from fats, generally a combination
of oils and fats, saturated, unsaturated. Contrary to what many
believe, good quality oils actually stimulate the metabolism and
lead to weight loss; but, as we all know, fats that are not metabolized
are dangerous. They clog arteries and result in weight gain and
a host of other problems.
Part of the controversy over fats and oils involves
the same old issues as to whose bread is buttered. The big stir
began when margarine producers tried to claim market share from
more traditional industries. A lot of the research has been fraudulent
or so severely misleading that it is best ignored; but here are
some facts upon which most experts agree.
Processing of Oils
In the processing of a vegetable or seed oil,
it is important that the machinery itself does not overheat and
that the oil is not exposed to either light or air. Oil oxidizes
very quickly and becomes unsuitable for consumption once the oxidation
has resulted in rancidity. Try to think of which bottles of oil
you have seen at the super market that say "cold pressed" and
which are bottled in absolutely opaque containers. Dismal, isn't
it? I have even been to health foods stores and clinics where the
oil was displayed where sunlight hit directly on the bottles, usually
clear glass . . . or cheap plastic.
The oil pundit, Udo Erasmus, studied all forms
of packaging and found that only two plastics, both made in Denmark,
were completely opaque and chemically stable, i.e., they not only
blocked 100% of light but did not leech chemicals into the oil.
To the best of my knowledge, only Omega
Nutrition and Barlean's use this packaging for their oils.
They also use the expensive German expressing equipment that does
not overheat. Perhaps a few Spectrum Naturals products now use
this kind of plastic.
You can make a 30% improvement in your diet by
simply changing the quality of oil you use.
You can also protect the oil from rancidity by
adding some turmeric powder to the oils that you intend to use
in cooking (where the turmeric flavor would not detract from your
We have been selling Omega's line of oils for
more than 12 years, but people rarely take the suggestion to change
to a higher quality cooking oil seriously. It's a little confusing
for me sometimes to be shipping out Stone Free but not oil. A word
to the wise!
Copyright by Ingrid Naiman 2003
Omega Nutrition Oils