The right cooking oil can make all the difference in the world to your health. This guide will help you in choosing the right cooking oils for seniors in your care
As you grow old, there is a concern about what you are eating. Most people like to shift towards healthier food alternatives as they grow old because unhealthy food can exacerbate several chronic diseases such as BP and Diabetes.
Cooking oil is among the few constant ingredients that a person consumes every day. The type of cooking oil you use has a major impact on the fat and cholesterol content in your diet. This article will guide you regarding the best cooking oils for seniors.
How To Choose The Best Oil?
You should look for cooking oils that are low-processed or even plant-based. You should not choose refined oils for seniors as they lack essential nutrients and often contain high amounts of cholesterol. Vegetable oils fall under the category of refined oils as well.
You will find that plant-based and low-processed oils have extra nutrients and antioxidants that promote good health for seniors.
Another thing to keep in mind while choosing cooking oils is to not go for oils that remain solid even at room temperature. These oils are generally high in bad fats except animal-based cooking oils like butter.
Types Of Fats
Fats are divided into two categories: good fat and bad fat. As their name suggests, not all types of fats are bad for your body and health.
Good vs Bad Fat
Good fats help our body absorb vitamins and nutrients from the food and store them in the body. This stored fat later becomes a source of energy for our body when we require it, and good fat makes our body more active.
Bad fats are known for increasing cholesterol in the blood, increasing the person’s weight, and causing the person a lot of digestive discomforts. As a senior, you should avoid saturated fats found in animal-based cooking oils, as saturated fats are directly linked to increasing the cholesterol level in the blood.
Having high cholesterol can make seniors more vulnerable to strokes, heart diseases, and other health ailments. There is another type of fat known as trans fat, and it is very dangerous for your heart as well.
Trans vs Unsaturated Fats
Trans fat is known for decreasing the good cholesterol in the body as well as increasing the bad cholesterol levels. You should try to completely avoid this type of fat in your diet.
You can find a lot of trans fat and saturated fat in packaged goods and items. Snacks like wafers, chips, fried snacks, cookies, and so on have copious amounts of these fats in them.
Instead of these fats, you should use unsaturated fats.
Unsaturated fats are commonly found in plant-based oils as they are healthy. These cooking oils will help you to build your immunity, make the heart stronger and reduce inflammation.
A very good example of a diet containing mostly unsaturated fats is a Mediterranean diet. Although this diet contains fats and oil, it is still considered to be healthy as it uses plant-based cooking oil and unsaturated fats.
The Right Cooking Oils For Seniors
Olive oil gives a lot of additional benefits to the seniors apart from being a healthier alternative. Elderly females that consume about one spoon of olive oil in their daily diet have a lower chance of developing breast cancer. This cooking oil also has antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, and these compounds are known to activate tumor suppressors.
Consumption of olive oil is also beneficial for Alzheimer’s disease. According to a research study, olive oil plays a significant role in clearing plaques. These plaques are known for damaging the neurons of the brain.
Peanut oil helps you lose unnecessary weight, as consumption of peanut oil will boost your metabolism. Peanut oil is also very effective for diabetic patients. You can improve your sensitivity to insulin with the help of this peanut oil. You can also use the vitamin E present in peanut oil to improve your hair growth. It will reduce the damage caused to your hair as well as it will also reduce dandruff in your hair.
People who have visible signs of aging can use peanut oil to reduce the fine lines, dark spots, wrinkles, patchy skin, etc. For people that suffer from arthritis due to inflammation of the bones, peanut oil will reduce this inflammation.
Groundnut oil is a very good source of saturated oils. Groundnut oil is composed of 40 to 50 percent of fats. The fats included in the groundnut oil contain oleic acid, linoleic acid, stearic acid, and so on. These components are known for reducing the risk of heart diseases and lowering the bad cholesterol level.
This cooking oil helps in lowering the risk of developing any heart disease. Sesame oil is also known for unclogging arteries that lead or connect to the heart. According to a research study done recently comparing sesame oil and olive oil, the results showed that sesame oil was more effective in reducing bad cholesterol in comparison to olive oil.
Canola oil is a form of vegetable oil, and this oil is mainly made from the cross-breeding of plants. This cooking oil is good for seniors as it has a low saturated fat concentration. The concentration of saturated fats in this oil is just near 7%. You will also find an abundance of vitamin E and K in this cooking oil. America produces GMO canola crops. Over 90% of the canola crops grown in America are GMO.
Rice bran oil
Rice bran oil is ideal for cooking food for seniors as rice is among the most popular and widely available food sources globally. You can extract rice bran oil from rice germs. This cooking oil has a higher boiling point than other types of cooking oils.
This type of cooking oil improves the skin’s health, and this oil also prevents the body from developing certain types of cancers. This oil is famous as it has a high quantity of Vitamin E, and you also get a good balance of fatty acids.
Is Coconut Oil All It’s Cracked Up To Be ?
For many years, people have stayed away from using coconut oil as a cooking oil because of the high concentration of saturated fats in it. Nowadays, coconut and coconut oil are being touted as a superfood. This is still not the case, especially for seniors. They should not eat food cooked in coconut oil as it will very likely increase their cholesterol and the risk of heart diseases.
However, if you want to consume food cooked in coconut oil, you need to choose an unrefined coconut oil. You can then add a little bit of food cooked in coconut oil to your diet. You should consume coconut oil in moderation as it does contain nutrients that will promote overall wellness, but it also contains fats.
While you are using unrefined coconut oil, you need to take care of the smoke point of that oil. As coconut oil is very versatile, its unrefined version has a lower smoke point. You should avoid going above medium heat while cooking with coconut oil as there are chances that you will overcook or burn the food with it.
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