We hear it all the time: “We’ll use your good olive oil for salads, but we’ll stick to the cheap stuff for cooking. Why ‘waste’ the good stuff for cooking?” Well, if you are concerned about carcinogens, then read on.
A recent Korean study may help you re-think how much you are actually ‘saving’. Researchers evaluated the effects of using UNREFINED Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) instead of the more commonly used REFINED seed oils (like grapeseed, sunflower etc…) when frying beefsteak. In particular they were looking at the production of HCAs (carcinogenic compounds formed in meats when they are cooked to high temperatures, for example when fried or grilled). Guess what? Adding 2-5 grams of EVOO to thin slices of beef significantly reduced the production of these carcinogens. Seed oils did nothing to protect the meat.
Mass-market olive oil, which is low in anti-oxidants, have also been noted to have no protection. Why? The researchers concluded the polyphenols/anti-oxidants that are present in high-quality EVOO act as scavengers and neutralize the carcinogens before they are formed.
So, when you are grilling, roasting or frying..reach for the good stuff. Your body and those of your loved ones will thank you.