Fats & Oils 101 2018-03-11T18:51:54+00:00

Learn which fats you need more of, and which oils you need to ditch… 

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Fats are an important part of a healthy diet. 

The fat you cook your food in is one of the biggest factors for your health.  Just like there are many great fats that not only fuel the body but give flavor to our food… there are also horrible oils you just need to stay away from.  The best fats and oils of course are the natural and most stable fats.

These oils are all naturally made without chemicals or processing.  They are versatile and some can be used for more than cooking.

 

If you are on a budget, prioritize your cooking fats and oils as they have the most impact on your health.

The most effective diets are always higher in fat, and lower in carbohydrates.  Adding healthy quality fats to your diet actually promotes weight loss.

Saturated fats and heart disease…

At one point in your life you have probably heard eating too much fat can clog your arteries and cause heart problems.  The reasoning behind this come from the strong marketing against saturated fat in the 70’s.  Until then people used to use natural fats like tallow and lard for everything.  It was the coconut oil of their time, even used for skin care!  

It has been proven that saturated fats cause absolutely no harm to our health.  There are plenty of studies showing the health benefits of a balanced full fat diet.  

As industrialization of food began to grow, our traditional food was replaced with factory farming and processed foods.  Food started being made in factories.  Seed oils like rapeseed oil, known as canola oil, became popular and new health problems also spread.  Heart disease became one of the biggest health issues for Americans.  Health professionals believe saturated fats were linked to heart disease.  There was no evidence to prove this, but it still became public policy in 1977.  This is when fat free and low fat became “healthy”.  Hard to believe but fat was healthy for thousands of years before corporations began controlling our food.  Studies now show that when we replace saturated fats like tallow, with polyunsaturated oils, heart disease rises incredibly.  There is also evidence saturated fats are not the cause of clogged arteries, on the contrary a high saturated fat diet helps control the damages of unsaturated fats.  

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The real cause of most health issues in modern society is the excessive consumption of processed foods made with refined oils like canola, safflower or soybean oil.  Margarine, and vegetable shortening are also part of the fats to ditch.  These hydrogenated oils are fairly new and have been proven to cause more harm than good.  A lot of health problems did not exist before these man made fats were introduced to the public as healthier options.  Many health professionals started recommending canola oil over traditional cooking fats like lard or tallow, which had been used for thousands of years before heart disease even became a problem.  

Ditching the bad oils.

An important thing to remember when eliminating these unhealthy oils from our lifestyle entirely is by being aware of the hidden ingredients in convenience food.  Read the ingredients label in everything boxed or packaged.  

  • Dressings
  • Baked goods
  • Sauces
  • Chips
  • Fruit/Nut Bars
  • Fake cheeses
  • Fast food
Oils to avoid
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soybean-oil-processed-oil
margarine-fake-butter
earth-balance

False advertising- Buzzwords

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Beware of dishonest marketing techniques used by companies, always read the ingredients label.  Flavored sprays are canola and soybean oil based, and they are definitely not healthy.   The food industry is aware of the shift we are taking towards a traditional real food diet, which is great but definitely not enough.  Buzzwords are being added to the front of products for marketing, a popular example is mayonnaise, the main ingredient in popular olive oil mayo is still soybean or canola oil.  Learn how to read ingredients label here. 

 

The Good Fats…

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is an amazing fat to sauté, fry, bake, all your dishes.  It is one of the oils with the highest smoke point at 450F.  There are two different kinds of coconut oil, refined and unrefined.

I also keep extra coconut oil jars around my house for easy non toxic body care.  I even use it for my baby and toddler in place of chemical loaded baby products.

If you are going to only buy one fat from the list, make it coconut oil.  Here’s why.

A few ways to use your coconut oil:
organic-coconut-oil

Ghee

Ghee is a traditional food originated from India.   Has many medicinal uses in Ayurveda as well.  My cast iron’s best friend is definitely my homemade ghee.  It is so easy to follow this recipe.  Once you start cooking with ghee you will most likely fall in love.  It has an extremely high smoke point, 485F.  This makes it perfect for deep frying.  You can also use it while baking, sautéing vegetables, topping your food, or even add a heaping teaspoon to your tea or coffee.

Olive Oil

Extra virgin olive oil is one of the healthiest and most nutrient dense foods for your body.  One important distinction from olive oil and the other top fats like ghee and butter is that pretty much every diet lifestyle strongly approves of olive oil and considers it a healthy staple to their diet.  Perfectly fits into paleo, vegan, vegetarian, ayurvedic diet, etc.  There is a popular misconception that you can not cook with olive oil but it’s actually perfectly fine to use for cooking, frying, sautéing, and of course in the classic vinaigrettes, marinades, and dressings.  Not only does olive oil have a high smoke point of 350F, but it keeps its nutritious properties even after extended heating time.  Read more about extra virgin olive oil here.

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Delicious ways to add extra virgin olive oil to your diet:

  • Creamy Avocado Dressing
  • Balsamic Vinaigrette 
  • Lemon Chicken Marinade
  • Italian gluten free breadsticks
  • Artichoke Dip

Butter

Grass fed butter is another very nutritious fat.  Despite it’s bad reputation, butter will not make you fat or clog your arteries.  Quite contrary actually adding a high quality butter made with cream from pastured cows is a super food.  Real butter is an amazing source of vitamin d.  It is great for those of us who can tolerate dairy.  If you have a dairy sensitivity, you can transform you grass fed butter to ghee with this quick method.  Once you remove the milk solids you should be able to tolerate it.

Tallow

Tallow is the traditional cooking fat that was used for thousands of years before the fat craze era started.  Tallow is also known as suet before it is cleaned by a very simple heating process.  It is easily made without any chemicals.  It is very important for the tallow to come from grass fed pasture raised cows.  

Lard

Lard is like tallow, but rendered from pig instead of cow fat.  Lard gives a great flavor to any dish and it is even used while baking.  This fat also naturally solidifies without the use of chemicals.  Always save the fat when cooking bacon.  You can cook the rest of your meal in the bacon fat or save your own lard in a mason jar in your refrigerator.  It is important to look for uncured, as most commercial bacon is cured with the chemicals.  Pork should always be pasture raised as well.  Factory farmed pork does the body more harm than good!

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Avocado oil is another one of the best oils for your health and wellbeing.  It is more than just a healthy cooking oil, it also has an abundance of healing and nourishing properties.  Successfully used to treat and help with many health conditions such as arthritis, high blood pressure, and cholesterol.  Learn more about avocado oil and it’s many uses here.

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  • Homemade Mayonnaise
  • Creamy Chipotle Sauce 
  • Creamy Ranch Recipe
  • Crispy Baked French Fries
  • Fried Fish Sticks
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Kinda Easy Recipes are always created with real natural fats and oils.  Two of the greatest feelings are feeling good and eating good, which is where our recipes come in.  We are well aware of the real health benefits fat has on the body.  We create our recipes with a love for health and nutrition.