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- Minimal “bad” fats: Compared to common culinary oils, canola oil has the least saturated fat (7 per cent) – less than a third that of rice bran oil (25 per cent) and half that of sunflower (12 per cent), olive (15 per cent), soybean (15 per cent) and groundnut (19 per cent) oils. Canola oil is also free of trans fat and, like all vegetable oils, has zero cholesterol.
- Helps protect the heart: According to scientific studies, 1.5 tablespoons (19 grams) of canola oil a day may be enough to help keep the cardiologist away, when used in place of saturated fat. That is for just a few rupees a day. The US Food and Drug Administration authorized a qualified health claim for canola oil’s ability to reduce the risk of heart disease when used instead of saturated fat.
- Helps control blood sugar: Canola oil can help control blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes when included in a low-glycemic index diet (one that minimizes changes in blood sugar levels), according to published research, because of its high monounsaturated fat content. Adding canola oil to the diet is a simple way of helping control blood sugar.
- May reduce belly fat: Canola oil was shown in a clinical trial to lower belly fat when used in place of selected oil blends in a heart-healthy diet for weight maintenance. Belly fat is one of the five criteria for metabolic syndrome. Reducing it can decrease blood pressure, blood sugar and triglycerides and increase in HDL cholesterol. Those who consumed canola oil on a daily basis for four weeks lowered their belly fat by 1.6 percent.
- Good source of heart-smart fats: Canola oil is rich in two polyunsaturated fats, omega-3 (alpha-linolenic acid) and omega-6 (linoleic acid). These fats are considered essential because the body cannot make them on its own. Of all common cooking oils, canola oil has the most plant-based omega-3 fat (11 per cent). It substantially reduces total and LDL cholesterol levels when used in place of saturated fat.
- Good source of vitamins E and K: Canola oil is a good source of these fat-soluble vitamins. Vitamin E is an antioxidant and vitamin K plays a key role in healthy blood clotting.
- May protect against breast and colon cancers: Early research indicates the potential of canola oil to protect against breast and colon cancers.
- Canola oil is a culinary delight: It can be heated to a higher temperature than most other oils before it starts to smoke (smoke point of 242 °C). This makes it ideal for high heat applications like sautéing and deep-frying. Its light texture, mild taste and colourless appearance are a good match for any type of cooking. Its neutral taste does not overwhelm the flavours of other ingredients in a dish, allowing the spices to work their magic and enhance the flavours.
- Canola oil enhances baking: The delicious nature of baked goods is enhanced by canola oil providing them with a moist, soft texture with no cholesterol and little saturated fat. Replacing solid fats like butter or lard with canola oil allows for a reduction in both total and saturated fat. In fact, total fat can drop by up to 25 percent, sparing calories without sacrificing goodness.