Unlock the Benefits Of Seed Oil for Health

By Tom Seest

Is Seed Oil Good for Your Health?

At SeedOilNews, we help people who are curious about seed oils by collating information and news about seed oils.

Seed oils are culinary and salad oils produced from pressing seeds like canola (rapeseed), corn, cottonseed, grapeseed, rice bran, and safflower.
Polyunsaturated fats are an essential element for maintaining a healthy diet.
Fats may help lower cholesterol, thereby decreasing your risk for heart disease; however, excessive consumption can be harmful and lead to health complications.

Is Seed Oil Good for Your Health?

Is Seed Oil Good for Your Health?

What Makes Seed Oil So High in Fat?

As with most health issues, seed oils have long been at the center of heated debate. Social media nutritionists and fitness gurus frequently voice their disapproval of them, while self-proclaimed nutritional experts remain divided as to their use in daily diets.
Seed oils have long been criticized due to their abundance of omega-6 fatty acids, which some studies link with inflammation and chronic disease risk. Unfortunately, however, the science underlying this claim can be confusing.
Fats derived from plants or animals contain an array of saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fatty acids; finding a balance among them is critical to good health.
Vegetable oils like soybean, canola, and sunflower oils contain an array of fatty acids that work to promote healthier cholesterol levels, blood sugar, and cardiovascular systems – hence their popularity as “heart-healthy” oils.
These essential fatty acids are necessary for our bodies to function correctly, but we must consume them in the correct ratio (typically one omega-3 to one omega-6 fatty acid).
As such, it is crucial that we prioritize eating whole, nutrient-dense foods rather than highly processed ones in order to increase our oil consumption and balance out our omega-3 to omega-6 ratio.
Canola, corn, cottonseed, soybean, safflower, and grapeseed oils are some of the most frequently used cooking oils in the US, often featured as ingredients in processed food like cookies and microwave popcorn, as well as salad dressings and margarine.
Understanding seed oils in the kitchen requires being familiar with both their purpose and method of production. Most refined seed oils go through an extraction process using solvents and heat that results in light-flavored products with neutral flavors, making them perfect for high-heat cooking methods as well as homemade dressings and sauces.

What Makes Seed Oil So High in Fat?

What Makes Seed Oil So High in Fat?

What are the Benefits of Omega-6 Fatty Acids?

When thinking of seed oil, linoleic acid might come to mind first. However, that’s just one type of omega-6 fatty acid; other varieties, such as arachidonic acid and gamma-linolenic acid, could be more beneficial. While omega-6s can play an essential role in health benefits, it’s vital that their levels be balanced out by omega-3 fatty acids for maximum effectiveness.
Seed oils come from many different plants, including sunflower, sesame, canola, and safflower. They’re an excellent source of healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats to keep you full while benefiting your heart health.
Seed oils pose a unique set of problems because they affect the ratio between omega-6 fatty acids and omega-3 fatty acids – known for leading to inflammation and chronic disease – and omega-3 fatty acids, leading to an imbalance that has been linked to an array of health issues ranging from rashes and acne outbreaks to joint pain, arthritis and even autoimmune conditions such as IBS.
Social media has recently been abuzz with reports suggesting that eating seed oils can harm one’s health, but that’s simply not the case! Seed oils are actually an excellent choice when combined with other healthy fats such as avocado and extra virgin olive oil, providing your diet with plenty of beneficial fats that contribute to good overall well-being.
Before using oils as part of your cooking repertoire, it is essential to gain an understanding of their production. First and foremost, realize that highly refined oils such as sunflower are particularly prone to oxidization and degeneration of their nutritional values over time.
Select a seed oil that has not been hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated, as these processes can produce trans fats that may harm your health.
Search for cold-pressed seed oils instead. Though more expensive than their refined counterparts, these don’t involve heat or chemical extraction processes and, therefore, won’t add anything extra to your budget.
So when it comes time for meal preparation at home or grocery shopping, pick out seed oils that will best serve you and your family. Most grocery stores carry these options, making them an affordable way to reduce cooking expenses on a tight budget.

What are the Benefits of Omega-6 Fatty Acids?

What are the Benefits of Omega-6 Fatty Acids?

What Makes Refined Seed Oil Different?

There is an array of seed oils to choose from, such as linseed, sunflower, canola, and grapeseed oil, which provide healthy fats and can be used in many recipes. Unrefined seed oils also provide ample vitamin E – something many don’t consume enough of through diet alone.
Seed oils contain omega-3 and polyunsaturated fatty acids that are beneficial for you, while experts contend that their proportion of omega-6 fatty acids is too high, leading to chronic inflammation that has been linked with heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
Other sources of these fatty acids can also be beneficial. For example, coconut oil contains polyunsaturated fatty acids, which have been proven to lower blood cholesterol levels and can even decrease your risk of cardiovascular disease. They’re also good for brain health and mood enhancement.
Dietary Guidelines recommend eating an appropriate amount of oils daily – 2 tablespoons should suffice.
Your diet should contain most of its oil from minimally processed sources such as whole grains and veggies, which provide essential vitamins, fiber, and healthy fats (like seed oils) that will help curb cravings and satiate your appetite.
To ensure you’re receiving an adequate intake of fatty acids in your diet, it’s essential that you pay close attention to food labels. Items marked “partially hydrogenated oil” or “trans fats” could contain unhealthy saturated or trans fats, which should be avoided.
Seeds like canola contain high quantities of an omega-6 fatty acid called linoleic acid, which the body converts into arachidonic acid – linked with inflammation in the body.
One reason some individuals advise against seed oils is due to concerns that linoleic acid increases inflammation in the body and an abundance of omega-6 fatty acid can increase the risk for health issues later.

What Makes Refined Seed Oil Different?

What Makes Refined Seed Oil Different?

Are Ultra-Processed Foods Good For You?

Seed oils can be used for frying, baking, and sauteing purposes and are harvested from various plants such as sunflower, canola, soybean, and linseed.
Breads, cakes, protein bars, and salad dressings often include wheat protein as an ingredient.
As our world becomes more filled with ultra-processed foods, you may already be aware of their link to poor health outcomes like weight gain, obesity, diabetes, and inflammation. Since they often contain added sugars and salt that wreak havoc on digestive systems, it’s no wonder these items contribute to such issues.
That’s why it is essential that you understand what foods affect your body and can seek guidance from your physician in designing an ideal dietary pattern suited to both your lifestyle and goals.
Most importantly, you should learn to identify industrial seed oils and replace them with healthy alternatives if possible. While avoiding them might be hard, selecting wisely could make an enormous difference.
Seed oils contain omega-6 fatty acids that have pro-inflammatory effects; too much of this nutrient may lead to inflammation in your body and increase your risk for heart disease, among other serious medical conditions.
If you want to reduce your intake of omega-6 fatty acids, one way is to increase omega-3 intake through foods like salmon or flax oil in your diet. This will help ensure an appropriate ratio between omega-6s and omega-3s and reduce inflammation risk.
An optimal way to do that is through eating a varied and healthy diet composed of whole, unprocessed foods – which means eating plenty of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean proteins!
Reducing your consumption of ultra-processed foods will also help lower omega-6 fatty acid intake since such items contain excessive omega-6s as well as sugar, salt, and food additives that may irritate the digestive tract and contribute to inflammation as well as chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

Are Ultra-Processed Foods Good For You?

Are Ultra-Processed Foods Good For You?

Be sure to read our other related stories at SeedOilNews to learn more about seed oils.