Oil And Some Facts - CiteHR
Agm Ehs And Project Management
Bhardwaj Ramesh

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Dear All,

Fats and oil have a very bad reputation when it comes to dietary requirements, but the truth is, there is such a thing as good fats and, moreover, they are an essential component of a healthy diet. Most nutrition studies show that too little fat in a diet is unhealthy, even dangerous. And while we don’t recommend you guzzle down oil, our mission is to arm you with the right information on what to use, how much to use and how to use it, to give this misunderstood food its due respect and you the health benefits.

Why we need healthy oils

Heart health: Some amount of the right fat is actually good for your heart. Cynthia Sass, Prevention’s nutrition advisor, says that consuming less than 20 per cent of your calories from fats and oils may actually increase your risk of heart disease. That’s because a deficit can lower your absorption of fat-soluble vitamin E (a powerful antioxidant), keep ‘good’ HDL cholesterol from rising and increase triglycerides.

Metabolism: Too little fat can kill your appetite, cause malnutrition and also play havoc with blood sugar levels, which can lead to strokes and blackouts. Other enzymes and hormones generated by fat cells are known to “provide satiety and satisfaction after a meal,” says Neelanjana Singh, senior nutrition consultant at Pushpawati Singhania Research Institute, Delhi. She also explains that fats carry compounds that give the food aroma and flavour. No wonder fat-rich food is so palatable!

Energy: You require a certain amount of fat to sustain your energy levels throughout the day. Fats provide nearly 9 kcal of energy per gram.

Nutrition: Studies show that some antioxidants and phytochemicals such as lycopene are absorbed 10 times more effectively when vegetables are paired with oil.

Cell health: Fats are an integral part of the cell membrane. They protect the cells and help them work efficiently, particularly the nerve cells. The sheath of fat around nerves helps in the smooth transmission of electric messages. Fats also provide insulation against temperature changes and, in turn, protect the vital organs in case of a shock.

Joint protection: Says Naini Setalvad, nutritionist, Mumbai, “Fats work as lubricants and provide the necessary smoothness between joints.” This reduces the wear and tear of joints caused by constant friction. Oils also maintain the elasticity of the skin cells and can delay the onset of wrinkles.

Why too much is bad news

Obesity: A tablespoon of oil gives around 120 calories. Add to it calories from other ingredients, and you’ve gone through the roof.

Heart risk: While a moderate amount of fat is beneficial for the heart, going overboard can lead to serious problems. Eating food with unhealthy fats can cause an accumulation of cholesterol in the blood vessels, which is one the main causative factors in heart disease.

Diabetes: An unhealthy and sedentary lifestyle coupled with a fat-heavy diet can slow down the metabolic process. There are also certain oils that are high in n6 (commonly found in fatty foods) that can cause insulin resistance and interfere with the healthy benefits of Omega-3 fatty acids. Excessive and unchecked consumption of oils, with high n6 levels or saturated fats, have also been known to increase the risk of certain cancers and affect longevity.

Understanding the types of fat

This primer will help you understand the heroes and villains amongst fats:

Saturated fats: They are not popular with health enthusiasts and, as several studies and clinical trials show, they are a major cause of cardio-vascular diseases. WHO confirms that “saturated fatty acids raise total and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol”. Sources: butter, ghee, full-cream milk and meat.

Unsaturated fats: These have mono unsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) or poly unsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). Studies show that MUFA can reduce LDL while PUFA can lower blood pressure (The National Institute of Health, US). Sources: fish, whole grains, nuts and olive oil.

Trans fats: These manmade, hydrogenated fats are the worst kind and should be avoided as far as possible, if not completely. They can cause lead to serious health issues including obesity, cardiovascular diseases and infertility among others. Sources: Dalda (vanaspati) and margarine. Most fried foods and packaged cookies and snacks are fried in hydrogenated fats.

Get the most out of your fats and oil

A mix of oil is better: Instead of making one type of oil your staple, use a mix. If you generally use mustard, use olive oil for salads and groundnut for your veggies.

Blend oils: Some oils are high in n6(PUFA) and others in n3(Omega-3(N3)polyunsaturated fatty acids.) When cooking a dish, blend oils to get the maximum health benefits.

Singh tells you the right ratios in which to blend oils:

Sunflower:Groundnut 1:1

Mustard:Sesame 3:1

Groundnut:Soya 2:1

Sesame:Soya 2:1

Avoid re-using oils: They can become carcinogenic. This means bidding farewell to snacks such as potato and banana chips, as well as pakoras and bhajjias from around street vendors.

Cut calories

If you’re not careful, you can add hundreds, even thousands of calories to your diet every day.

Fill a mister (available at most kitchen stores) with oil, and mist veggies and fish instead of pouring or brushing them with oil.

Oil the vegetables and not the pan when cooking. It’s a good way to minimise oil intake

Bake and saute foods as far as possible and avoid deep frying. For baked samosas, brush the samosas with oil and then bake them in an oven.

Measure oil with a teaspoon. You may think you use oil sparingly, but this is the only way to know for sure.

Say no to fried foods completely, says Setalvad. She explains that a batata vada is worth about 500 kcal, while one cup of pistachios is worth only about 100 calories and is more nutrition and satisfying. So make the right choices and stick to healthy foods and snacks

Finally, exercise, exercise and exercise. Nothing offsets oil’s disadvantages better than burning off your calories.

_-Medical centre

(collected from health megazine)

Thanks & Regards,


Dear Sudhir, Excellent sharing.Very useful in our day to day life. Keep on sharing..................Very enriching stuff.
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