I know I said that Bob’s Red Mill would be my next post, but this quick topic came up and I felt like clearing the air!
I was reading a publication from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and ran into an advertisement about Canola Oil. I have vetted the information they shared to make sure it was accurate, because we all know that believing someone who is selling you something is not in your best interests! [Let that be a life lesson to you! ha!]
How did Canola Oil get it’s name?
At first, I assumed that there was some kind of canola nut, or something that they got the oil out of. Then several years ago I read that it came from rapeseed, but I couldn’t figure out why there would be rapeseed oil and canola oil, if that was the case. I obviously didn’t spend much time looking into it, but now I know!
Canola oil was developed in Canada through plant breeding to remove two components found in rapeseed (erucic acid and glucosinolates). Hence, the new plant was named Canola – a combination of “Canadian” and “ola” (meaning oil).
FYI – they wanted to cut back on the erucic acid because large amounts of it can be toxic. Canola must have less than 2 percent erucic acid. They wanted to cut back on glucosinolates because it has a bitter taste. Canola must have less than 30 micromoles of glucosinolates.
Is Canola Oil good for me?
Interesting is that the canola plant is actually a member of the Brassica family that includes broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower. This family is one of the most studied groups of foods for it’s cancer fighting benefits. Check out more info on that here: Anti Cancer Diet Essentials: Cruciferous Vegetables.
Canola oil also has a favorable fat profile. It has the most plant based omega-3’s and the least saturated fat of all the plant based oils. It’s transfat free and also has very little flavor, which is a bonus if you have family members picky about the stronger taste of olive oil.
How do I use Canola Oil for cooking?
The great thing about canola oil is you can use it in pretty much any capacity you would need oil. It can heat to a high temperature without burning, so it’s good for stir frying, searing, baking and roasting. It works in baking because of the neutral flavor. It’s also great for vinaigrettes, if you don’t want the olive oil flavor.
Want to know more? Here’s a few articles I found helpful when fact checking:
From the Mayo Clinic: I’ve read that canola oil contains toxins. Is this true?
From Eating Well: How Healthy Is Canola Oil Really?
From the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: All About Oils
Bob’s Red Mill is up next! FYI – I made their Teff Porridge this morning for breakfast and it was delicious!!