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The Ugly on Canola oil?

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  • #16

    Thanks for the info guys. I cut out Canola about a month ago after reading some posts on this board. Now I use Olive Oil and Coconut Oil only. Do you guys know if Cordain has updated his stand on Canola? He seems to be pretty well informed so I'm surprised he is so wrong on this issue.


    • #17

      I am not sure about Cordain but Dr. Eades used to recommend Canola oil and no longer does because of the amount of processing it must go through to make it palatable. This processing is going to damage the fatty acids.


      • #18

        Best thing about Canola/rapeseed oil: you can put it through a diesel engine almost unprocessed


        • #19


          Actually, coconut oil has been used likewise. Something readily available out on those islands in the pacific. Diesel fuel doesn't grow on trees, you know.....oh, yes it does!


          • #20

            Diesels are pretty Primal. There are firms here who convert used cooking oil into fuel, best thing to do with most of it. Before it's used for cooking would be even better. That requires some processing/cleaning but they seem to go well on Omega 6s, unlike people.


            • #21

              You can make biodiesel in your backyard, it's not terribly difficult. But definitely for the dedicated.

              There's a woman who owns a large, successful mostly vegetarian restaurant and dance place in Denver, the Mercury Cafe. She runs her M-B from the oils from her business. I can't recall if she converts it first or not. Could be a hard start in the winter there if not!


              • #22

                The fact that canola oil is processed, isn't a very good argument against it. The diet espoused on this site says to avoid processed foods - yes. But we aren't avoiding processed foods for the sake that they're processed -- we're avoiding them because they are harmful in some way. Saying Canola oil is bad BECAUSE it is processed is a non starter.

                The fact that someone makes money off of Canola oil is another irrelevant point. People make money off of grass-fed beef, coconuts, etc. as well. This has nothing to do with whether they are good or bad for you.


                • #23

                  FDGreen, here you go:


                  While you are entitled to your opinion, your implying that people who follow the PB are blindly following it is disconcerting. I've found the people on this forum to be very intelligent and most of them do their homework before offering advice.


                  • #24

                    WOW, maba!

                    Thanks for this great link


                    • #25

                      FDgreen, it is kinda a premise of the PB that if you can't eat it in it's natural state, stay away. I think this is sound advice.

                      It's grandma, but you can call me sir.


                      • #26

                        Not to fuel the fire, but is anything that we are eating really in its natural state? Hasn't everything been modified or processed by mankind at some point?

                        I'm not defending canola oil by any means. I just think that FDgreen raises valid points in evaluating primal criteria; processing and marketability of a food in and of themselves are not reasons for avoidance. It is quality of the resulting product and appropriateness for our physiology with which we are concerned.

                        Maba, I agree that this forum is filled with smart people who do their research and employ critical thinking. However, intelligence does not does not completely eradicate the possibility of groupthink.


                        • #27

                          You have a point Shine.


                          • #28
                            Canola makes me really ill. I've put a few things together as to why I have decided it does not come into our household. And I was familiar with rapeseed as a stock food crop - something you fed to make cattle fat. And even some cattle get sick on it.

                            And I really do not want something that has gone through processes including bleaching, degumming, deodorizing, and caustic refining, at very high temperatures in my body.

                            All bolding is mine.

                            From: Natural News
                            Canola is an engineered plant developed in Canada. The oil is derived from the rapeseed plant (an excellent insect repellent, by the way.) The rapeseed is a member of the mustard family. Rapeseed oil has been used extensively in many parts of the world, namely India, Japan, and China. Before the rapeseed was genetically engineered, about two-thirds of the monounsaturated fatty acids were erucic acid (see below). Erucic acid was associated with Keshan's disease, a condition which is characterized by fibrous lesions of the heart. In the late 1970s, Canadian plant breeders were able to create a variety of rapeseed which produced a monounsaturated oil which was much lower in erucic acid. This "new" oil was originally called LEAR oil (Low Erucic Acid Rapeseed.) Neither "rape" nor "lear" created an appealing image: hence, Canola ...("Canada" and "oil.")

                            The good:
                            Canola oil is marketed as an oil very low in saturated fat and high in monounsaturated fat. Diets high in saturated fats have been blamed for the incidence of higher levels of heart disease (although recent research is supporting the value of select saturated fats such as grass-fed beef and organic butter.) Studies involving a traditional Mediterranean diet which is naturally high in monounsaturated fats are pointing to lower rates of both cancer and heart disease.

                            The bad:
                            Canola oil took the market by storm, as it is relatively inexpensive to produce, especially compared to olive oil. Olive oil has a long history of scientifically documented health benefits. The problem with olive oil is that there is not enough olive oil in the world to meet the industry's needs. In addition, olive oil is too expensive to use in most processed foods. Canola oil has filled this need for a mass-produced, publicly acceptable form of a monounsaturated oil.

                            Olive oil is the gold standard, documented with extensive research. Quality olive oil (Extra Virgin, Cold-pressed) is manufactured by this simple process: The olives are pressed, the oil collected. The food oil industry is promoting Canola oil as an equally healthy twin to olive oil. This is deceptive, as there are few studies involving Canola oil and human health. (Numerous animal studies point to serious and deleterious effects of canola oil on rats and pigs.)

                            In addition to the genetic modification, the process of making Canola oil is troubling. The procedure involves a combination of high-temperature mechanical pressing and solvent extract, usually using hexane. Hexane! Even after considerable refining, traces of the solvent remain. Like most vegetable oils, Canola oil also goes through the process of bleaching, degumming, deodorizing, and caustic refining, at very high temperatures. This process can alter the omega-3 content in the oil, and in certain conditions bring the trans fat level as high as 40 percent.

                            The Ugly:
                            It is becoming increasingly difficult to find products that do not contain Canola oil. A popular "crafty" mayonnaise brand boasts the phrase "With Olive Oil," along with a picture of an olive and olive leaves on the front label. Upon reading the fine print in the ingredients on the back label, you discover that Canola oil is listed at the top of the long paragraph, olive oil near the end. Even worse are products promoting that they are made with olive oil, yet listed in the ingredients, the manufacturers state: "May include olive, Canola, or sunflower oil." The consumer thinks they are buying salad dressing made with olive oil, yet it could be Canola or sunflower oil. This is insulting to the health conscious population.

                            Erucic Acid
                            From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

                            Erucic acid is a monounsaturated omega-9 fatty acid, denoted 22:1 ω-9. It is prevalent in rapeseed, wallflower seed, and mustard seed, making up 40-50% of their oils. Erucic acid is also known as cis-13-docosenoic acid and the trans isomer is known as brassidic acid.

                            It has many of the same uses as mineral oils, but with the advantage that it is more readily biodegradable. Its high tolerance to temperature makes it suitable for transmission oil. Its ability to polymerize and dry means it can be - and is - used as a binder for oil paints. Erucic acid will readily form many organic compounds. Adding this ability to its polymerizing characteristics makes it very suitable for use as organic matrices that need to be polymeric. This makes it especially useful in the manufacture of emulsions to coat photographic films and papers. A complex cocktail of many different erucic acid compounds is commonly used in color film. It is widely used to produce emollients, especially for skin and healthcare products. Like other fatty acids, it gets converted into surfactants. Erucic acid is especially valued in tribology as a superior lubricant. When used in the manufacture of plastic films in the form of erucamide, it migrates to the surfaces and so resists the sticking of each film to its neighbor. Being a hydrocarbon of high calorific value, with a very low flash point, high cetane number, and good lubrication qualities, erucic acid can be a valuable component of bio-diesel. When converted into behenyl alcohol (CH3(CH2)21OH), erucic acid has many further uses such as a pour point depressant, enabling liquids to flow at a lower temperature and silver behenate for use in photography.[1]

                            Sources of erucic acid
                            The seed oil of the rape plant is rich in erucic acid. The name erucic means: of or pertaining to eruca; which is a genus of flowering plants in the family Brassicaceae. It is also the Latin for coleworth, which today is better known as kale. Erucic acid is produced naturally (together with other fatty acids) across a great range of green plants, but especially so in members of the brassica family. It is highest in some of the rapeseed varieties of brassicas, kale and mustard being some of the highest, followed by Brussels spouts and broccoli.[citation needed] For industrial purposes, a High-Erucic Acid Rapeseed (HEAR) has been developed.[citation needed] These cultivars can yield 40% to 60% of the total oil recovered as erucic acid.[citation needed]

                            Health concerns
                            Erucic acid is a predominant component of rape (Brassica napus and B. camestris) and mustard (B. hirta and B. juncea) seeds.[3] Rapeseed oil contains up to 45% erucic acid.[4] Food grade rapeseed oil (also known as canola oil, rapeseed 00 oil, low erucic acid rapeseed oil, LEAR oil, and rapeseed canola-equivalent oil) is limited by government regulation to a maximum of 2% erucic acid by weight in the USA[5] and 5% in the EU,[6] with special regulations for infant food.
                            Before the advent of genetic engineering, plant breeders were aiming to produce a less-bitter-tasting multi-purpose crop from oil-rapeseed that would appeal to a larger market by making it more palatable and safer for cattle and other livestock. Whilst it was possible to breed out much of the pungent-tasting glucosinolates that was the cause of the problem, the traditional methods of plant breeding, resulted in one of the dominant erucic acid genes also getting stripped out of the genome in the process, so greatly reducing its erucic acid content.[citation needed] Although this latter effect was an unintended consequence of the breeding program, it was noticed from studies on rats that they show signs of lipodosis when fed high quantities of erucic acid.
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