Hot off the press, some just published research to add to a very long list of health benefits of olive oil. This time showing its benefits in improving LDL cholesterol and blood glucose in healthy individuals.
I’m really only blogging about this as a means for commentary as I’m asked so often about coconut oil (technically it’s a fat, not an oil). If there are health benefits for coconut oil (unreferenced claims made in blogs don’t count) they are based on a very small amount of research, so olive oil is the clear winner in the ‘evidence’ stakes here.
There is merit though in using a variety of oils and fats in your cooking rather than relying on one ‘superfood’ to cure all your health problems (insert sarcasm). Coconut oil certainly has its place in the kitchen. So too does olive oil.
And don’t believe what you may hear that olive oil is bad for you because it has low stability and is heat sensitive. Yes, olive oil will oxidise and go rancid eventually, but ‘so what’? That’s why it comes in dark bottles, is recommended to be stored in a cool dark place, and to be used within a few months before this occurs to any significant extent.
Coconut oil will oxidise and go rancid exactly like olive oil, just that it will take longer to do it. It’s like arguing that UHT milk is ‘better’ because it has a longer shelf life compared to fresh milk.
And as for heat stability, the smoke point of extra virgin olive oil (the temperature where you see blue smoke start to be produced and lots of nasty chemicals produced) is on a par with unrefined coconut oil. It is only the refined coconut oil that has a higher smoke point and in that case, you can use a similar extra light olive oil (zero taste, but very heat stable) for the same purpose.