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  • Writer's pictureShruti GOCHHWAL

Refined Oils: Are They Good Or Harmful For Your Health?

Oils are composed of three fats namely monounsaturated, polyunsaturated and saturated fats. Cooking oils are considered high in fat; they should not consume excessively. The confirm elimination of cooking oils from diet may help to cut out fat deposition. The oil that is supposed to be used should be a good balance of monounsaturated, polyunsaturated and saturated fats. The saturated fats should be in lesser amount amongst the three on the nutrition value because they are more harmful. Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats belong from category of unsaturated fats and considered good fats and offers some health beneficial effects like; Improve cholesterol levels, reduce inflammation, stabilize heart rhythms. Consumption of excess and harmful oils should be avoided for a healthy heart.

Monounsaturated fats may be found in avocados, almonds, pecans, hazelnuts, pumpkin seeds, olive and peanut. Flaxseed, soybean, corn and sunflower oil contain polyunsaturated fats.

What are Refined Oils and which one one should you use?

how to use refined oil

refined oils

Refined oils involve sophisticated mechanical and chemical processes to extract the oil from seeds, due to which natural nutrient removed out from the seeds and a final product formed which oxidizes easily. These oils are more prone to form free radical, which causes cancer. Oils can be made more stable and stored for longer if particles and resins are eliminated.

These oils also offer property like resistant to smoking, afford high-heat cooking and frying. Sunflower and peanut oil are recommended for deep frying and heating.

High monounsaturated fats of these oils increases resistance to the high heat. Some refined vegetable oils are hydrogenated, which makes them solid at room temperature. But there is disadvantage of hydrogenation process is that this process damages the fatty acids of oils and forms trans fatty acids which are considered harmful to human health. There are some demerits of the excess consumption of vegetable oils generated from chemical extraction processes like; elevation in blood triglycerides, impaired insulin response, carcinogenicity and heart related disease.

What are Unrefined Oils?

know about unrefined oils

unrefined oils

Unrefined oils are lightly filtered to remove large particles this oil involves sesame or olive oil which may have cloudy appearance, due to light purification process these are compromised with quality. It possess more pronounced flavors, colors and fragrances than refined oils. Unrefined oils offer more nutritional value but shorter storage profile than refined oil. Unrefined oils are used unheated in dressings or with low heat sautéing or baking. On overheating the natural resins and beneficial particles of these oils burn and developed unpleasant flavors with harmful property.

Smoke Point of oils

Smoke point is the temperature at which oil start smoking and produces toxic fumes along with harmful free radicals. Due to variation in chemical property various oils offers different smoke points, therefore some oils possess better suitability for cooking at higher temperatures than others. As per general consideration it can be concluded that more refined oil offers higher smoke point; therefore vegetable, peanut and sesame oils possess highest smoke points.

Cooking Oils you should Avoid

which refined oils you should avoid

refined oils

Oils are composed of balanced combination of fats but the fat ratios in some oils are imbalanced which may be harmful to the health, these oils are commonly used in deep-frying which is unhealthy to begin with and can even contain genetically modified ingredients. Vegetable oils are loaded with an improper balance of omega- 3s and omega-6s, may increases risk of many degenerative diseases; therefore, following unhealthy oils must be avoided: Corn, Canola, Soybean, Sunflower, Safflower.

So the sensible option to choose would be soybean oil as it is very versatile, mild and economical. It is used in commercial food production in the united states. Soybean oil can also be used in a variety of cooking or baking purposes.

Even though the fat content in oils may be harmful and complete eliminating oils from diet is not the even the easier and solution; thus by consuming the healthiest oils, using appropriate temperature, the harmful effects of oils can be avoided. Ayurveda also suggest that the consumption of oil must be reduced as the ageing process since in older age excess consumption of oil may increase problem associated with heart disease. The

oils like corn and canola must be avoided to maintain nutritional diet.

How oils should be stored?

Oils convert to rancid and oxidize on exposure to air, heat, and light. Oils should be natural and should smell and taste pleasant.

Consuming the rancid form is not good and can cause multiple health issues like heart disease, cancer etc. cooking oils should always be stored in a glass bottle which is airtight and should be kept in a dark, cool place, away from light.


Oils are types of fats and should be used in moderation. Specific attention should be paid on smoke point of oils before use. Storage of oils is also important factor and cooking oils should be used as early as possible to reduce its rancidity. The excess consumption of oil in older age must be avoided and cooking oil should contain balanced nutritional value of good fats. 

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