Seed oils are the latest thing we’re being told are detrimental to our health, and after researching myself and diving head first into podcasts and studies, I can absolutely confirm they are a huge factor as to why we are in an obesity pandemic and why we have so many chronic inflammatory conditions (including PCOS) in our world today.
Highly processed oils are made from soy, corn, canola and sunflower and other plants which at first when brought onto the market emerged as ‘healthy’ because – they are from plants so they must be right?
In the 1900s, the tech to process these oils were invented, resulting in our supermarket shelves being full of them. The first one being Crisco, which was a cooking fat derived from cottonseed oil, manufactured through a chemical process.
Crisco went on a marketing spree, and after 5 years the company was selling 10s off millions of liters of the stuff.
In recent years however, we have to compare our overall health 30 years ago to what it is today. Obesity hardly existed, chronic health conditions were half of what they are today (Did you know 75% of the worlds conditions killing our society today still does not have a cure?) and the rate of depression, anxiety and CVD has shot through the roof.
Many nutritionists now can see these processed vegetable oils have specific fatty acids in them that lead to inflammation and chronic health conditions.
They are now given the name ‘the hateful eight’ and should be avoided at all times.
So what can we do?
All cooking oils are combinations of fatty acids, but it’s the higher levels of polyunsaturated fats (PUFAS) found in seed oils that make them undesirable in some eyes.
A healthy person has about 2% of PUFAs in their body fat; on average, however, overweight and obese people contain as much as 30% of PUFAs in their body fat.
A study looked at two peoples fat cells from 20 years ago and now, with majority of overweight people holding 25% of PUFAS in their cells compared to 2%.
This means our cells are growing and absorbing the seed oils, which is absolutely contributing to our society getting fatter.
Another study I heard was they gave a man two sandwiches –
1) Processed white bread with Kraft processed fake cheese
2) Unprocessed wholegrain sourdough bread with proper cheddar cheese
They tracked the outgoing of energy found a 50% reduction in the bodies expenditure of calories.
That means the body held onto 50% more calories!!!
This creates a huge hormonal clog and makes the body more stingy by holding onto energy, in turn slowing your metabolism down even more than what we already have with PCOS.
Higher-than-normal levels of these seed oils can lead to reduced energy and bodily inflammation, which in turn can contribute to obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
Furthermore, the highly processed nature of seed oils makes them ultra-rich in omega-6 fatty acids, a key contributor to inflammation. According to Chris Kresser, co-director of the California Center for Functional Medicine, the human body works best when its ratio of omega-6 fatty acids and omega-3 fatty acids (the ones you see on any bottle of grocery-store fish-oil supplement) is balanced.
Now we are throwing the balance of omega 3 and 6’s out of wack, as seed oils are everywhere!
I actually went into a supermarket and spent 4 hours checking labels to find them in everything, even foods you’d consider ‘healthy’. Meat, Sauces, salad dressings, Nut milks, ‘Health’ bars, and the obvious processed foods such as cookies, crisps and candy.
So what’s the answer?
With so much conflicting information out there, it’s difficult to know exactly what to do.
In short, we want to consume as much UNPROCESSED produce as possible. Think fresh, raw, organic, anti-inflammatory. Build a diet rich in whole Foods, whole grains, protein and healthy fats.
Swap your oils to grass fed butter or extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil or avocado oil.
Load up on fish such as salmon and tuna, nuts and seeds, fruit such as berries and avocados and eggs.
Look out for the seed oils on the packaging, get in the routine to check the ingredients regularly.
But don’t stress yourself if you can’t always do it because its not sustainable or feasible. We live in a world where processed food and chemicals are everywhere, so we have to do our BEST to make better choices and pick better ingredients for our hormones as much as possible.
Think 80/20 balance life. Forever.
Reach out to me via DM or book a call through my website – I’d love to help you x