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8 Healthy Eating Myths Debunked

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7. Myth: Cooking olive oil destroys its health benefits.

Truth: Olive oil’s fabulous reputation has been ever-so-slightly marred by the myth that it can’t take the heat–that even if you cook with premium versions, you cook away the healthful properties. Not true!Even delicate extra-virgin oils can take the heat without sacrificing nutrition.

Heart-happy mono-unsaturated fats aren’t unfavorably impacted by heat. And new research is showing that the phytonutrient compounds responsible for giving olive oils their complex flavor profiles as well as other healthful properties are surprisingly stable, as long as the oil isn’t heated past its smoking point, which for extra-virgin olive oil is pretty high, about 405F.

But do make sure to store olive oil (and all oils) properly. Fats and phytonutrients can stay stable for up to two years if stored in unopened opaque bottles at room temperature and away from light. Heat, light, and air dramatically effect stability.

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Read more: Diet & Nutrition, Eating for Health, Food, General Health

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Melissa Breyer

Melissa Breyer is a writer and editor with a background in sustainable living, specializing in food, science and design. She is the co-author of True Food (National Geographic) and has edited and written for regional and international books and periodicals, including The New York Times Magazine. Melissa lives in Brooklyn, NY.

179 comments

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8:47AM PST on Dec 13, 2013

Thank you!

8:32AM PST on Nov 6, 2013

Considering that caffeine is a digestive track stimulant I'm still staying well away from it, after all if you've got a functional digestive disorder or a sensitive colon a stimulant is the last thing you need no matter what other benefits it gives you. After all sudden diarrhea or reflux causing vomiting due to caffeine 'stimulating' your body is the last thing that's going to be good for you. Eggs are a problem not because of their cholesterol content but because of their fat content, again not something you want with a sensitive colon..fat being another digestive stimulant.
I also know for sure that the last one is wrong, at least in Australia. It costs me a lot more to get my food for the week then my dad, why? Because I need to eat far more healthily then he does, low fat soy milk is far more expensive then regular milk as is fresh veggies over frozen not to mention all the meat supplements (which are actually much better for me then meat).

7:49AM PST on Nov 6, 2013

Why did they need to test this on monkeys? Grants? There would have been plenty of human volunteers!

5:37AM PDT on Oct 8, 2013

the first myth does not convince me as a myth

4:39AM PDT on Oct 8, 2013

What about ants?

7:25AM PDT on Oct 1, 2013

Thanks

3:36PM PDT on Sep 29, 2013

t

3:24AM PDT on Sep 15, 2013

Thank you :)

5:19AM PDT on Jul 31, 2013

Thanks

2:12AM PDT on Jul 27, 2013

Thank you :)

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