How bad is canola oil? Most canola oil is genetically modified. Some is processed using hexane. But it is possible to obtain organic (not genetically modified) canola that is made using only pressure and mild heat (around 100 degrees F which is well below its smoke point). Rapeseed in it's natural version has toxins, but crossbreeding in the 60s (not GMO) was able to produce strains with very little toxin. Many other types of veggies have been similarly cross bred over many generations and are commonly eaten despite low levels of some toxins. The toxins in the canola version of rapeseed are the same toxins that exist in low levels in other mustard plants of the same family like kale, broccoli, etc so it's not like we don't already eat it at times. Canola oil can be extracted from the seed using only mild heat and pressure. No chemicals, bleaching or deodorizing is needed as far as I can tell. Unlike other seed oils, Canola has a good omega 3/6 ratio. It's 32% PUFA but mostly MUFA. Canola will certainly not be on my list of super healthy foods, but I do wonder if a little bit once in a while may not be worth worrying about. The only reason I am thinking about it at all is because there are some very tasty salad dressings made with canola. Opinions? Have I forgotten something? (yes, I know, it's a seeeeeeeeeed!)
I've read in several sources that even "cold pressed" canola is rancid because the pressing process generates its own heat due to the friction of pressing. It then has to be bleached and refined to get rid of the rancid smell. The fact that it's rancid, and the additives used to cover this up, make it hugely inflammatory. This is true of any vegetable oil, not just canola, because seed oils are volatile compared to oils from hotter climates like olive, coconut, macadamia, etc. I avoid all seed oils and don't miss them much.
Here's what I have to say about canola oil...
Yeah, I hope Mary Enig didn't say "Canola oil was produced by genetically modifying the parent rapeseed so that the monounsaturated fatty acid would be oleic acid instead of another monounsaturated fatty acid caled erucic acid." GMOing happened much after canola started, and for different reasons than reducing erucic acid. Also, can you explain how oxidized oils are more like a plastic than a food?
Canola oil is a goitrogen. It disrupts the healthy functioning of the thyroid gland by blocking the absorption of iodine and conversion into thyroid hormone. Avoid canola oil like the plague if you are hypothyroid.
A local farm to where I live in Sussex makes this
It is lovely colour and my local butcher sells it - but I prefer to buy fat and render it down into lard!
I do wonder if it would be a good source of vitamin E, however. I have thought of making mayonnaise using it.
32 percent pufa? Thats high. I believe it also has trans fats. Not sure where I read that though. Make the salad dressing with a better oil, or don't at all.
Bread, pizza, and cake all taste good too...
I am NO expert, but:
"The name "canola" was derived from "Canadian oil, low acid" in 1978" (It's a made up thing, in other words.)
A product known as LEAR (for low erucic acid rapeseed) derived from cross-breeding of multiple lines of Brassica juncea is also referred to as canola oil and is considered safe for consumption."
Words like "derived" and "safe for consumption" make me leery. More and more, if something I pick up in the grocery store has canola oil in it, I put it back.
Seems like there are a lot of good fats out there that are not so dodgy.
We produce Expeller-Pressed canola oil. We gravity separate the the oil after pressing. The finished oil is very yellow. If you put it on a white plate (for dipping), it will look fluorescent yellow. The oil in a clear bottle will be dark like honey. Just like all other oils that have high oleic acid components (olive oil, fish oil, etc.), canola oil has an odor and a taste as well as a color. Canola oil is a heavy oil. It pours just like 30 weight motor oil.
Processing changes the chemical make up of canola oil. When you chemically alter the canola oil it is no longer canola oil. If you are buying canola oil and it is light or clear in color; if it has no odor or taste; then, it is not canola oil.
Alan Verbitsky The Canola Oil Company firstname.lastname@example.org
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