Are Refined Vegetable Oils Unhealthy

Half a century ago soy, safflower and linseed oils were used to make paint and varnishes, but then chemists discovered technique to make it from petroleum oil, which was cheaper. At that time due to lack of any merchant to purchase their crops, farmers fed the soy and safflower to their pigs. As a result the pigs got fat. Then scientists developed a technique to purify the vegetable oils and remove their paint-like bad smell, and that process was used to manufacture refined oils. Now these vegetable oil became taste less and odor-less and widely accepted by society, as even doctors of that time preferred it over animal fat (such as butter). Refined vegetable oils were also cheaper than other traditional animal fat derived from cow milk.

The oil once used for making paints and later used to fed pigs is now being used in our kitchen. So the question is if the refined vegetable oil is healthy or not ? 

What is a refined vegetable oil ?

Refined vegetable oil means vegetable oil that has been "purified". Here purification may mean a number of treatments, such as filtered, deodorized, neutralized, treated with acid, purified with alkali or bleached. Natural antioxidants and nutrients are also removed from vegetable oil in the process of purification. Such treatment of any food product can make it unhealthy.

Some refined vegetables oils also undergo hydrogenation, which turns oil into solid state and increases its shelf life. Such hydrogenated oil contains a large percentage of trans-fat, which is considered very unhealthy. According to an estimate by FDA more than 90% of prepared cookies, crackers and frozen breakfast contain trans fats. Such readily available food items and food served in restaurants usually contain hydrogenated vegetable oil, which increases the profit but degrades the health. Next time when you purchase any packed food, check its ingredients if it contain trans fat.
Do you known that New York became the largest city in US, where restaurants are asked to go trans-fat free. 

Refined Vegetable Oil may cause Cancer

Some recent researches have found that animal fats don't contribute to heart diseases while vegetable oils do. According to a research consumption of butter has decreased from 18 lbs per person per year to just 4 during past century. Refined Vegetable oil has taken place of butter, and researchers fear that it might be a reason behind increased heart diseases and cancer cases. [1]
N‐Nitrosodi-n-butylamine is a carcinogen found in Soybean oil, one of the mostly used refined vegetable oil. Concentration of this carcinogen in Soybean oil is 290 μg/kg. Same carcinogen is also found in cheese at 20 to 30 μg/kg , in smoked meat at 3.9 μg/kg and at 0.003 μg  per cigarette. [2]

Health Facts about Refined Vegetable Oil


  • Soybean oil (used in 75% of American Kitchens) increases obesity, which is directly linked to heart diseases and diabetes.
  • Since introduction or refined vegetable oils in 1960s , the reported cases of heart diseases and cancer has increased tremendously.
  • Soybean oil creates imbalance of Omega-6 and Omega-3 in body. Each table spoon of soybean oil contain 6807mg Omega-6 and 917mg Omega-3, while it should be in our body in equal amounts.
  • Omega-6 creates inflammation, which is sometime necessary to heal cuts and wounds. But overdose of omega-6 creates unnecessary inflammation, which can cause a number of health issues.[3]  

Note: Before starting to use any new vegetable oil, make sure that you know how it is made and what are its effect on health. Your awareness can save your health and also your medical expenses.

Reference:
[1] http://www.happilyunprocessed.com/the-basics/refined-oils-and-why-you-should-never-eat-them/
[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soybean_oil
[3] https://www.nutritionadvance.com/harmful-effects-of-soybean-oil/
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