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How to enjoy fried foods “safely”
You’re a heart attack WAITING TO HAPPEN. So when, your doctor tells you, “ to stay away from fried foods”, you hear them, but you don’t always OBEY them.
They’re fat bombs.
And fat is the ENEMY !
Although those keto folks, on the internet, suggest OTHERWISE.
The reality is……….. fried foods, taste good and well, they’re a cultural tradition.
Fried in ?
So, you’re doing it. Maybe not as often as you would like, but even if you’ve cut back on fried foods, you might not be getting the BIG BENEFIT, you’re expecting.
You see the benefit, depends on what kind of oil, is being used.
Oiling up the rats
Our team bravely, enrolled 110 male rats into their “oil for dinner” study. I say bravely, because that is a lot of rats, with big egos, and unlike most “feeding” studies, this study didn’t last for a week or two, it went on for 6 months.
That’s a lifetime for a rat.
And it means, the result is a whole lot more relevant to you. Yes, it is still a study on rats, not people, but it’s long enough to show an effect. Plus, it gives clues as to what happens when you do things, regularly.
Remember, small things can make a big difference to your health.
So, what did they do ?
The oil for dinner study
They divided their 110 rats into 11 groups and added a little extra oil to their dinner. Quite literally, they took the commercial rat chow, ground it up, and added some vegetable oil. They chose two different types of oil, both of which are widely used in Malaysia.
- Palm oil – which is considered a saturated fat
- Soybean oil – which is a polyunsaturated fat new one
But, they didn’t just add oil directly from the bottle, they fried it up….
Fried sweet potatoes
In a big stainless steel wok, they fried up sweet potato “chips” – the cooking process was very scientific. The sweet potato fry, lasted exactly 10 minutes and the oil temperature peaked at 180°C.
They ate the chips, the rats got the oil (15 % w/w), mixed in with their standard rat chow.
- When it was fried once.
- When it was re-used once.
- When it was re-used five times.
- When it was re-used ten times.
The team cooked for the rats, every week FOR 24 WEEKS.
Serving oil dinners
The rats, could eat whenever they pleased and, as much or as, little as they l
iked. The housing was pleasant….. the temperature was a cosy 27°C, the days were 12 hours long.
Life was good !
Except for the once a week, blood pressure measurement…..
This involved a blood pressure monitoring cuff on the tail and temporary confinement, in a body-sized plastic container.
It all came to an end, at 24 weeks………….
So what happened ?
Fried foods NO PROBLEM
The fresh oil, caused zero problems with blood pressure. Zero. Actually, the animals with oil in the mix, had marginally better blood pressure, than those stuck eating plain old rat chow.
There was no difference between palm oil and soybean oil.
But in the case of the used oil…………….. it was a different story.
Used oil caused blood pressure to increase, significantly.
The more times the oil had been “re-cycled”, the bigger the blood pressure rise. In the case of palm oil, oil that had been re-cycled 10 times, was bumping up blood pressure by 25.4 %. It was worse for soybean oil, the oil that had been used 10 times, bumped up blood pressure levels, by 34.4 %.
Ouch ! That’s a heart attack waiting to happen !
Blood vessels look gnarly
In a follow up studies they took a look, at the state of the blood vessels. The prolonged consumption of reheated palm oil, significantly increased the thickness of the aortic wall.
Reaffirming, that consuming re-used oil, was not a health move.
Used once is not a bargain
Buying previously owned clothes, cars or cameras – can be a good deal, provided the item is still in good nick.
In the case of cooking oils, it is NEVER a good deal.
The frying process is chemically taxing….. there is
- thermal oxidation
Which, leaves the fatty acid chains MANGLED.
The more unsaturated the fatty acids in the oil are, to begin with, the more opportunity for problematic changes to occur.
And………… damaged fats ARE a health risk.
Unfortunately, it is an all too common practice, to fry foods in USED oil. It is something that happens at corner cafes, big brand restaurants, slow and fast, and some suburban kitchens.
I know, I know ……….
- Fried foods taste GOOD and
- Oil is expensive
But, this is one of those times, you’re being penny wise, but pound foolish.
Fat per se is NOT BAD
But, oxidized fats ARE.
It you’re going to fry foods, opt to use a saturated fat, like coconut oil or butter. And don’t be a scrooge, use fresh oil.
NOTE : Watch the processed foods and “eating out”. Even if the oil is changed once a day, odds are, it’s still been re-heated a couple of times, putting you at risk.
Involvement of Inflammation and Adverse Vascular Remodelling in the Blood Pressure Raising Effect of Repeatedly Heated Palm Oil in Rats. International Journal of Vascular Medicine (2012) Article ID 404025, 10 pages. Chun-Yi Ng, Yusof Kamisah, Othman Faizah, Zakiah Jubri, HjMohd Saad Qodriyah, and Kamsiah Jaarin.
The WHO is committed to make the world trans fat free, by REPLACING trans fats, with alternative products by 2023. How safe are these alternative fats ?
Now, it’s okay to eat fats, as long as they’re “healthy” fats. Which leads to the million dollar question, what are “healthy” fats ?
A diet low in advanced glycation end products, shifts body chemistry, from being insulin resistant, to insulin sensitive. You eat what you like, just cook it differently.
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