Friday, March 24, 2017
I thought I had discovered something new and awful in my food today, but in researching it I found that it has been in use since the 1950s. Interestereified soybean oil was in the cookies I just ate. Why Oh Why don't they check out the ingredients at the store!!!??? (There has to be something wrong with an ingredient whose name has a homonym for terrified in it.) This was in a care package sent to me from a cousin.
These oils are chemically modified versions of old familiar trans-fat oils and fats. They do not actually fit into the same category as TRANS-FATS which are absolutely horrendous for our health. So, they are no longer mentioned as trans-fats, but are seemingly much worse. These will lodge themselves in Male arteries, inflame them and promote plaque adhesion. In women, they lodge in fats of the body and so promote cancer such as in the fat of the breast. There were a number of other issues surrounding them, but too many for me to list here. Sooooo....just avoid them!
I hope that all of you are already looking for and avoiding labels that say Trans-fats, Saturated fats, Hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated...for that matter...why not just avoid all fats, but if you cannot, go for Olive oil, Butter and mono-unsaturated fats.
Now, I really want to avoid butter....good heavens what a bad choice, but if you are making something that requires shortening, Butter is a much better overall choice.
Here is the real kicker...these fats may not even appear on the ingredients list!
Here is a health tip to top all health tips:
Make as much of your food from scratch as possible!
Butter vs shortening
I remember the taste of rolls in big pans...wonderful...and baked goods of all kinds, made with shortening. I guess it is made out of vegetable fat, and that has to count for something, but it is Hydrogenated...one of the great watchwords for foods to avoid. Butter on the other hand may be high in calories, and full of fat, but at least it is not hydrogenated. If you are baking, shortening makes the baked goods much more tender, and butter tends to crisp the baked goods up a bit, sometimes unpleasantly so, but it is clearly the better choice if you must eat fat in baked goods.
Here is a compromise...I give you permission to eat butter instead of shortening....but eat much less just to please me!
Margarine too is hydrogenated and though it may work in your baked things, is not a good choice for your health. To be fair though, you should read the label on your brand of margarine to look for the words Hydrogenated, trans-fat and saturated fat. If they appear, you should avoid them.
Olive oil is a mono-unsaturated fat. It is a good oil, as are others, but it may not be satisfactory for baking. There are some fine recipes in the Italian repertoire for baked goods with Olive Oil, but traditional recipes do not work well with it because of the liquid state of the oil and because of the pronounced taste of the oil.
If you are Italian though, you probably enjoy the taste of Olive Oil on your bread, vegetables etc., so please try this instead of butter or margarine.