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With heart disease on the rise, I felt it was really important to create this post. Many of us know that fast food is bad for us. But, do we know why it is so bad for us? Saturated fats. These fats are solid at room temperature and a reason for high cholesterol levels. Even making one small change in your diet can lower blood cholesterol levels and improve lipid profiles. But how? What if I told you all you had to do to get started was replace the bad cooking oils with the good. Of course, this isn't the only key to good cholesterol. But, it's certainly a start. This topic alone inspired me to create an easy to understand infographic, with the hopes of helping even just one person make the switch. When we take a look at the different types of oils its extremely crucial to take into consideration the ratio of Omega- 3 essential fatty acids & Omega- 6 essential fatty acids. These fatty acids are called essential because our body actually doesn't make them, but we need to consume them in our diet. In modern diets, there are very few sources of omega-3 fatty acids (mainly the fat of cold water fish such as salmon, sardines, herring, mackerel, black cod, and bluefish). But, Omega-6 fatty acids are much more common in foods and found in things such as nuts, seeds, crackers, and a ton of snack foods.
Many nutrition experts believe that prior to us relying so much on processed foods, we consumed omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in about equal amounts. But unfortunately, most North Americans and Europeans now get far too much of the omega-6s and not nearly enough of the omega-3s. This imbalance in our diet may even explain the rise of diseases like asthma, coronary heart disease, many forms of cancer, autoimmunity and neurodegenerative diseases, all of which are believed to come from inflammation in the body.
When it comes to the oils we use to cook, its critical to use an oil with approximately even proportions of omega-3's & omega-6's. I have comprised a list for you of oils to ditch and oils to start using, so you can get started right away!