The Benefits of Cooking with Avocado Oil
Many of the recipes I create start with avocado oil in the ingredients list. It is my kitchen pantry goto and I use it as a fat in almost all my recipes. Recently, somebody asked if they could use another oil for a recipe I had created. My short answer is yes, but I want to share the reasons I believe that avocado oil is the G.O.A.T of all cooking oils, with hopes of maybe getting one person to update their pantry.
There may be times I come across as a little fanatical about certain foods or products, granted I am dramatic by nature, but I truly believe that I can help heal and care for my body through the food choices I make. There have been little changes in my daily diet that I believe have contributed to me being able to manage my chronic illness without immunosuppressants, steroids, and pain medications, not to say that I don’t need these at times, but overall my illness is managed without them. That is because my goal every day is to cook in a way that supports my body's overall function. This doesn’t mean I do not indulge in foods that maybe don’t serve my physical body but serve another piece of myself, like my soul, because soul food is a very real thing. I am just trying to be in tune with my body because it truly is our greatest messenger, we just need to listen.
Switching to cooking with avocado oil was an easy change to make. Removing cooking oils that are harmful to our bodies is a great place to start. Avocado oil has a mild taste and has a 500˚ smoke point (certain types of avocado oil). With any oil that you use, the most important thing to be aware of is the oil's smoke point. When your oil smokes, meaning it has been heated past its smoke point (ideal temperature), toxic fumes and free radicals, which are harmful to our bodies, are released into the food. Since Avocado oil can be heated up to 500˚ it is the perfect cooking oil for everyday use. Additionally, you can replace any recipe calling for cooking oil, salad oil, vegetable oil, butter, or canola oil with avocado oil.
Avocado oil is similar to olive oil when it comes to health benefits for hearts and arteries. Both oils are high in oleic acid, a monounsaturated Omega-9 fatty acid. This fatty acid has been shown to increase HDL (the “good” cholesterol) and lower LDL (the “bad” one) which helps eliminate plaque buildup in the arteries. Additionally, Omega-9 fatty acids can serve as an anti-inflammatory and have many benefits for skin and hair.
Avocado oil is also rich in vitamins A, B1, B2, D, E and lutein. It has been shown to help protect against free radicals that can be damaging to our systems on a cellular level. So yeah, as I said in the introduction, Avocado oil is the G.O.A.T.
In 2016, Healthline listed “9 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Avocado Oil”, listed below.
Rich in Oleic Acid
Reduces Cholesterol & Improves Heart Health
High in Lutein, an antioxidant that has benefits for the eyes
Enhances the absorption of important nutrients
May reduce symptoms of arthritis
May help prevent gum disease
Improves skin and enhances wound healing
Neutralizes free radicals
Very easy to use
Like most cooking oils, avocado oil will be sold in a few varieties; raw, virgin, unrefined, naturally refined and refined. I stay away from all refined cooking oils, but naturally refined is okay with me, because a mechanical extraction process is used versus a chemical one. Naturally, refined avocado oil also has the highest smoke point making it ideal for everyday cooking and the safest oil for high heat, especially frying. @chosenfhttps://www.instagram.com/chosenfoods/oods is a personal favorite since I can purchase in bulk at Costco. Plus, it has a mild taste and a lovely texture.
Raw, virgin, and extra virgin avocado oils are the best for the health benefits, but you will not be able to use these at a higher heat. The smoke point for these types of oils is only 350˚. The best uses for these purest forms of avocado oil would be to add as a drizzle at the end of cooking, use with dressings and marinades, or put a little in your morning smoothie.
I published a recipe to make your own Canna Avocado Cooking Oil, but feel free to make any kind of infused oil, adding herbs, garlic, or other aromatics. Be creative and enjoy making something for yourself and your health.