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Q. How Healthy Is Canola Oil Really?

By Brierley Wright, M.S., R.D., March/April 2010

How Healthy is Canola Oil?

A. Canola oil comes from canola seeds. They are a genetic variation of rapeseed that was developed in the 1960s using traditional plant-breeding methods to make the rapeseed more palatable.

But canola often gets a bad rap. For example, we get questions from people who’ve heard canola oil is toxic and can cause various diseases, from emphysema to Mad Cow. The truth is there are no sound scientific studies suggesting a link between canola oil and any disease.

We also hear concerns that canola oil is genetically engineered (GE). This is true—most canola (93 percent in the U.S.) is GE. If that’s a concern for you, choose certified organic.

EatingWell often uses canola oil in our recipes because it’s one of the healthiest oil choices. It’s a good source of monounsaturated fats, the kind that, when used to replace saturated fats like butter and cheese, can help reduce “bad” LDL cholesterol levels and lower your risk of heart disease. Canola is the richest cooking-oil source of alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 fat that has been linked to heart health.

Canola is also versatile: it has a neutral taste, light texture and a medium-high smoke point, so it works well for sautéing and baking. (An oil’s smoke point is the temperature at which it begins to smoke. When it does, disease-causing carcinogens and free radicals are released, so you never want to heat your oil to that point.)

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COMMENTS POSTEDsort icon

did author ever received research money from monsanto / any gmo company to produce / do research?

Anonymous

04/10/2016 - 4:22pm

I get severe stomach cramps and explosive diarrhea whenever I consume canola oil. I suffered for about two years before I figured out it was this oil. It is also highly unstable and must be carefully stored, has a short shelf life and has a tendency to go rancid and get moldy. Research erucic acid and upset stomach and there is a wealth of information as well as an explanation of why this oil makes me so sick.

Anonymous

04/08/2016 - 6:51pm

To consolidate my oils, I poured Canola Oil into the thick green bottle with the remainder of my Extra Virgin Olive Oil, then capped it. Two days later, when I went to use the mixture of oils to coat a sauce pan, I discovered that the glass had exploded into 2" size pieces. What kind of chemicals are in these oils. Should I be ingesting them?

Anonymous

03/21/2016 - 5:08pm

I cannot have any canola oil. It causes me to have pain in my intestines and I have to run to the bathroom in minutes, what am I to do if everything out there has canola. My sister has crohns diease and it causes a huge backfire on her intestines....so those of you that find yourself running to the toilet think back and see what you ate. I'm left with literally nothing to eat no frozen foods can goods box food and even bakery goods. Peanut butter my favorite food I cannt indulge in and as for resturant I don't even go anymore. Come on out there what about those that are sensitive this is unfair........ yes there are other oils but they are mixing canola with them. This has got to stop and they should give us a choice in oil not tell us what we can and cannot have.

Anonymous

03/19/2016 - 4:19pm

This is mainly a reply to the other comments posted.

First of all, there is absolutely nothing inherently wrong with GMO foods. Nothing. "Natural" doesn't make anything special, and saying so only proves that you don't understand chemistry.

Second, a substance is toxic only depending on how much of it you consume. So what if the seed was used to make poisonous gas? There is something called Oxygen Toxicity, which means that, yes, you can be intoxicated from an excessive amount of the very gas which you need to live.

Finally… anyone saying "do not be fooled by the mainstream system" is more often than not a science denier. The same type of person that denies climate change and evolution. Bruce Fife is a naturopath and a scammer who believes that vaccines cause autism. Do not trust him.

Anonymous

03/09/2016 - 12:10am

There is no such thing as organic canola oil - period. Do and read this article:
"Canola Oil: Is It Healthy? by Bruce Fife"
Do not consume Canola oil in any circumstances. For starters it was developed from Rapeseed Oil which is the most toxic of all food oil plants. They used Rapeseed oil during WW1 to create Mustard Gas.

There are multiple health problems that Canola can cause.

Canola is heated to 300degrees C to get rid of the stink, so anything that might have been beneficial has been cooked out of it. Don't be fooled by the mainstream system. Do your own due diligence first.

Anonymous

02/27/2016 - 7:47am

every body has a different truth for many reasons so this is the information highway what a mess,
a mass of differing opinions.
its like wading across a muddy river, wet & boreing wallace tonkin

Anonymous

02/19/2016 - 2:53pm

Very funny comments. Was in a Food Safety seminar one time and all Food Technologists were shocked at my negativity towards canola oil, going on about the health benefits in this product.

Ntombi

Anonymous

02/03/2016 - 5:30am

Eat real oils from real plants - Olive, coconut, avocado, palm....not chemical oil...NATURE knows what good. SIMPLE.

Anonymous

02/02/2016 - 3:19pm

It's scary even in products with the NON GMO seal. Canola oil is used. Since there is a high percent of it being genetically modified, it's best to avoid it all together since nobody can truly be sure if it's truly organic.

Anonymous

01/23/2016 - 9:09pm

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