Plant oils are a rich source of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs and PUFAs, respectively). When used in place of saturated fats, these heart-healthy fats may help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke by improving related risk factors such as total and LDL blood cholesterol, blood pressure and inflammation. Plant oils also provide essential nutrients such as vitamin E to help build and maintain cells in the body.
When it comes to cooking, some oils can handle the heat better than others. “Smoke point” is the temperature at which oil starts to break down. Oils with high smoke points (such as vegetable, peanut and sesame) are good for frying or high-heat stir-frying, while oils with low smoke points (flaxseed or walnut) work well in salad dressings and dips.
There are many types of vegetable oil used for cooking and adding to food. Taking into consideration the calorie, fat and other nutritional value of vegetable oils is the best way to choose them.