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Overview of cooking oils: olive oil to sesame oil

Which edible oils, besides the well-known olive oil, are good for our health and our immune system? Which should only be consumed in moderation and which oils should we avoid? Here we present some tasty and healthy edible oils in more detail. Olive oil, palm oil, rapeseed oil and sesame oil are not only convincing in terms of taste, but also have a variety of healthy ingredients that are extremely beneficial for health.

olive oil

Characteristics: Olive oil is pressed from olives and has been known in the Mediterranean for 3000 years. It comes from the oriental region and has been in use there for over 6000 years. The Mediterranean area is still a classic cultivation area today. There are over 150 varieties of olives that are used to produce oil. The European Union has issued criteria for quality assurance that the oil must meet. Olive oils are divided into nine quality categories, with extra virgin olive oil, virgin olive oil and normal olive oil being particularly high quality.

The taste and aroma are very different depending on the quality of the oil. The taste also depends on the growing area, harvest time and climatic conditions. This should come as close as possible to enjoying fresh olives. The more mature the olives that are processed, the sweeter the oil tastes. Unripe olives result in an end product with a bitter taste.

Use: Olive oil is used as an edible, ointment, healing and massage oil. It is used in the kitchen to marinate meat and fish, and is used for roasting, stewing and braising meat, poultry, fish and vegetables. Tasty marinades for salads can be made from olive oil. If you put a spoonful of olive oil in the cooking water of pasta, this prevents the pasta from sticking together.

Healing powers: The hydrocarbons and sterols contained in it have a preventive effect against cancer, and the pherols also reduce the Cholesterol levels in blood. Olive oil has anti-inflammatory and anticoagulant properties.

Palm oil

Characteristics: Palm oil is extracted from the pulp of the oil palm. Fresh palm oil has a slight smell of violets and a sweet taste. Palm kernel oil is obtained from the kernel of the fruit. Malaysia and Indonesia are the largest producers of the oils.

Use: In Africa, palm oil is used as normal kitchen fat. As it hardly contains any unsaturated fatty acids, heating is not a problem. Hardly any nutrients are lost. Palm oil and palm kernel oil are used to make margarine, sweets, but also detergents, soaps and cosmetics.

Healing powers: just one tablespoon of palm oil contains the daily requirement for vitamin E, beta-carotene and vitamin E.

Rapeseed oil

Characteristics: Rapeseed oil is obtained from the seeds of rapeseed and turnip rape by pressing or extraction. Rapeseeds contain around 40 percent oil and have been used to break down oil for 2000 years. Rapeseed oil is the most common oil in Europe.

Use: Rapeseed oil is mainly used for the production of margarine, but also as an edible oil. It is suitable for frying, but also for marinades. In combination with dairy products and eggs, unlike other oils, it does not become bitter and is therefore suitable for making mayonnaise. It is used in technology as a lubricant and as a fuel.

Healing powers: The high proportion of alpha-linolenic acid has a beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system. The vitamin E and the caritonoids are said to protect against cancer. Rapeseed oil also improves the cholesterol level and has a positive influence on blood sugar regulation.

sesame oil

Characteristics: Sesame oil is obtained from the black and white seeds of the sesame plant. The sesame plant, which can be up to one meter high, has been grown in China and India for over a thousand years. The light sesame oil is obtained from the natural seeds and is odorless and tasteless. The dark sesame oil is made from roasted seeds and has a dark, brownish color and a nutty, intense taste due to the roasting.

Use: The light sesame oil is mainly used in oriental cuisine and in Asia as an edible oil. It is also used to make marina or as an ingredient in skin care products. The dark sesame oil is used more for salads and for seasoning ready-made dishes. Searing not only loses a large part of the ingredients but also the taste.

Healing powers: The contained phytoestrogens help to protect the heart and prevent cancer from developing. Magnesium supports cell function, the syringic acid it contains defends the skin against UV rays with a sun protection factor of 2. The high lecithin content helps the brain on the jumps and promotes its blood circulation. In India, sesame oil has a good reputation as a skin care product that makes the skin resilient.

Photo reference: unless otherwise stated, photo credit by Fotolia.com (or Adobe Stock)

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