Thursday, September 26, 2013

Oils for Heart-Healthy Cooking

As a bariatric surgeon, Dr. Michael Feiz is well aware of the obesity crisis facing the nation, and he has tips for those considering ways to lose weight. One of the main points of advice from Dr. Feiz for those interested in weight loss is to eat healthier meals, and to prepare them at home. That leads to the question of which cooking oils to use, as there are dozens, and they are not all as good for you! 

Remember that all oils are a significant source of fat, which is their primary nutrient. Fats are an important component of a healthy diet, but it’s important to know that they have a high concentration of calories compared to proteins and carbohydrates. Be aware of the two types of fat when comparing oils: saturated and unsaturated. This can help you determine which oil is the best or healthiest to use.

Percent of Saturated Fat: use this handy graph to help you choose products with the least amount of saturated fat. Look for the <3
The healthy fats are unsaturated, which may help lower cholesterol levels in the blood when used in the place of saturated fats. Unsaturated fats are divided into polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, and come from vegetable oils, fish oils, and oils derived from nuts, seeds, and avocados. Saturated fat is considered unhealthy and The American Heart Association recommends limiting saturated fat consumption to less than seven percent of total daily calorie intake. Saturated fat can raise bad cholesterol and increase the risk of heart disease. Saturated fats occur naturally in many foods, including animal sources such as chicken skin, lard, and beef tallow and plant-based foods such as tropical oils.

If you are interested in learning more about cooking oils, look at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute's article on "Cooking with Healthier Fats and Oils." 

To learn more about the health benefits of weight loss and bariatric surgery, please visit Dr. Feiz' website at

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