FUDiabetes

New concerns about canola oil and Alzheimer's

For the past 30 years, many of us have been using canola oil, in particular for high-temperature uses, and when needing a healthy oil with no taste, because if its high content in mono- and poly-unsaturated fats. It is particularly important for us because of the very high incidence of heart disease consecutive to long-time diabetes.

This brand new study links the use of canola oil in mice with weight gain and increased risk of Alzheimer’s:

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-017-17373-3

Chronic exposure to the canola-rich diet resulted in a significant increase in body weight and impairments in their working memory together with decrease levels of post-synaptic density protein-95, a marker of synaptic integrity, and an increase in the ratio of insoluble Aβ 42/40 [Note: correlated to the age of disease onset]. {…}
Taken together, our findings do not support a beneficial effect of chronic canola oil consumption on two important aspects of AD pathophysiology which includes memory impairments as well as synaptic integrity. While more studies are needed, our data do not justify the current trend aimed at replacing olive oil with canola oil.

I have found that, in nutrition, studies in isolation are not helpful, and it is only when clusters of studies confirm a new idea that it is worth taking action. In addition, this study is on mice: the logical transition to humans often cannot be made. So I am planning to change in our use and practice. Nonetheless, I find this valuable info that I will keep in mind, looking for future studies to confirm or invalidate.

At the same time, we use almost exclusively olive oil ourselves, so I would see little impact on us anyway—although I just found at Costco a reasonably priced bottle of avocado oil which I grabbed [!!!]. I will report on the result when I have experimented enough!

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Grapeseed oil also works well in high temp applications, and it has the benefit of being quite thin so you can usually use less.

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We use (refined) coconut oil almost exclusively because of my muscle disease - it’s the oil I can utilize most - but also use grapeseed and olive oil. I try to use olive oil primarily in low heat/cold applications, since its smoke point is lower than the others. Avocado oil actually is supposed to have one of if not the highest smoke point - I’ve only semi-recently gotten past an intolerance to avocados, so haven’t had a chance to try it out myself - I’m curious to hear how it does.

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In most domestic cooking, we don’t normally approach the danger-zone smoke points, which are more associated with high-BTU restaurant ranges and deep-frying. Even if you do fry or sauté over the highest heat, most of us don’t (or shouldn’t) do so with the frequency that would amount to a significant health hazard. For sautéing or frying on a normal domestic scale, regular olive oil should pose no health dangers. Extra-virgin olive oil is wasted on such uses, not so much because it breaks down, etc., but because heat destroys its delicious flavour, which is what you paid for.

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Well, then I’ll rephrase and say I use it for low heat/cold applications because we only buy EVOO and use it when we want that flavor. :wink: You mentioned ranges/deep frying, but what about oven use? I still roast my veggies in EVOO even though it’s at a higher temp because you just can’t beat that flavor.

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You’ve got your olive oil. And then you’ve got the virgin olive oil, extra virgin olive oil, olive oil with a questionable past…

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