The health benefits of extra virgin olive oil are well known, but is it suitable for cooking?


There has been a lot of speculation about the use of extra virgin olive oil for cooking. Some say that frying in extra virgin olive oil is extremely harmful, while others say that it is extremely healthy, as this is how Mediterranean food is made. Let’s find out what the truth is and put an end to this debate once and for all.

Extra virgin olive oil is the least processed variety and is generally considered the healthiest form of olive oil. It is obtained through natural processes and is standardized in terms of purity and specific sensory properties such as taste and smell.

When Health Shots spoke with nutritionist Avni Kaul, she told us that “in addition to its unique flavor and aroma, extra virgin olive oil is rich in disease-fighting antioxidants and has been linked to a wide range of potential health benefits.”

Although there are undeniable ones the benefits of extra virgin olive oil when it comes to our overall health, especially our skin, it is still not suitable for cooking. As Avni Kaul explains, there are a few reasons for this.

Extra virgin olive oil is extremely beneficial, but it is not for cooking!

Why we don’t use extra virgin olive oil for cooking:

1. Due to the presence of sensitive nutrients

One of the reasons why extra virgin olives are expensive is the fact that they have more delicate nutrients and have many health benefits. Kaul explains that these benefits can be enjoyed by using them as salad dressing however, if you heat cooking oil, the nutrients will lose their properties.

extra virgin olive oil for cooking
Heating extra virgin olive oil destroys its nutrients, so don’t do it! Image credit: Shutterstock

2. Heating damages omega fatty acids

Omega fatty acids it helps prevent various heart diseases and has a protective role against cancer and other conditions. “The oil contains both omega 3 and 6 fatty acids. Omega 3 in particular is crucial for cell membranes and tissues and is quite high in the retina, brain and sperm, among which DHA has almost 36.4% of the combined fatty acids. Fatty acids are heat sensitive and are destroyed the moment they are heated,” says Kaul.

Extra virgin olive oil
You don’t want to lose the omega-3 fatty acids by heating extra virgin olive oil. Image credit: Shutterstock

3. It becomes toxic smoke due to low smoke point

To determine which oil is best for cooking, we need to determine its smoke point, and extra virgin olive oil does not have a favorable smoke point. Kaul explains that “when oil is heated above its smoke point, toxic fumes are released. As extra virgin olive oil has a low smoke point, cooking with it will increase the risk of producing smoke that is harmful to our body.”

Generally speaking, you can cook in extra virgin olive oil, your kitchen won’t explode or your food will turn to poison, but it won’t do you any good either, as all the nutrients you paid extra for will be gone.




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