Are Seed Oils Bad For You?
Every once in a while, I like to listen to the Joe Rogan podcast, mostly when I'm on a long road trip or walking my dog. While he fell into a lot of hot water for his comments about COVID and the vaccinations, it's his comments about seed oils that stand out to me the most since that falls right into my wheelhouse.
On several occasions, Joe bashes seed oils and goes as far as to warn his guests that they are incredibly bad for people. In a few episodes, he mentioned an article forwarded to him by Joel Salatin, a free-range former who was featured in the documentary Food Inc.
While I love that Salatin and Rogan promote healthy, holistic nutrition, the two have absolutely no credible education in nutrition sciences, so you have to take their advice with a grain of sand. According to Rogan, the article sent by Salatin indicated that seed oils increase cardiovascular health risks, such as heart attacks, high blood pressure and cholesterol. Additionally, Rogan indicates that seed oils contain contaminants and detergents.
The claims are true to a VERY limited extent. Seed oils can be very healthy alternative to lard when cooking for a sustainable and healthy lifestyle.
Exponentially more research articles support the health benefits of seed oils, especially in comparison with saturated fats. However, the mode of extraction that makes a giant difference.
The seed oils to be watch out for are those that are obtained through heated or chemical extraction methods. One of the important things to know about vitamins, such as vitamin C, is that many are sensitive to things like heat; when exposed to high heat, this could kill off a lot of the vitamins and antioxidants naturally found within the seeds from which the oil is being extracted.
As for the oils that are chemically extracted, it is true that detergents are often used, however, health regulations limits how much it can contain. According to experts, the amount of detergents present is so small that one would have to consume extraordinarily large amounts of this seed oil to be affect.
Nevertheless, if I had to choose from seed oils where the vitamins and antioxidants are gone and there may be detergents versus a detergent-free oil with ALL of the vitamins and antioxidants, I doubt that I am the only who would opt for the latter. It is because of this that companies have to be smart about marketing these items.
Cold-pressed seed oils are the far healthier option. Since cold-press extraction methods means that heat is not used and the oil merely being squeezed out, the oil contains all of the natural vitamins and antioxidants.
Seed oil manufacturers are smart about their marketing techniques. With cold-pressed seed oils, the obvious health benefits are bound to appeal to those that are concerned about their health, so manufacturers are going to make sure they make those benefits known to customers. On the other end of the spectrum, the manufacturers of heat-pressed and chemically extracted oils are hoping that less educated individuals would focus more on the lower price for these products than potential health implications.
My advice is to be willing to spend the extra dollars for cold-pressed seed oils because the alternatives, while it is unlikely that they are going to be giving you cancer or some other disease, their lack of nutrients makes these products fairly useless.