It is foodie Friday
The Danger Of Cooking With Oils Past Their Smoking Point.
Yes, oils have smoking point.
This brings to mind the popular practice of bleaching palm oil in the kitchen.
Cooking with healthy oils is great for your body, but it’s important to consider the type of cooking oil you’ll be using and how high the temperature will be getting.
Different oils are ideal for different heats, and using the wrong oil can be harmful to your health if you cook it beyond its smoke point.
This brings to mind the popular practice of repeatedly using already used oil to cook again and again.
This is common in homes as well as the roadside woman who sells akara(bean balls), yam, or meat.
What is smoke point?
The smoke point of an oil is exactly what it sounds like: the point at which oil begins to smoke.
The smoke point is a natural property of unrefined oils, reflecting an oil’s chemical composition.
One of the main reasons for refining (or processing) an oil is to raise its smoke point.
As with all other oils, an oil’s smoke point varies with how much it’s been processed.
High-quality oils have a lower smoke point than highly-processed oils which can have higher smoke points.
What happens past the smoke point?
When an oil is heated past its smoke point, it generates toxic fumes and free radicals which are extremely harmful to your body.
When the smoke point is reached, you’ll begin to see the gaseous vapours from heating, a marker that
oil has started to decompose.
Decomposition involves chemical changes that not only negatively affect the food’s flavour and nutritional value, but also create cancer-causing compounds that are harmful when consumed and/or inhaled.
So if you’ve cooked your oil too long and it starts smoking, please turn off the stove.
Keep the vapours out of your lungs!
Throw away any food that’s been in contact with the oil.
It’s much better to start again than to risk putting these free radicals into your body.
Did I say throw away? Yes!
The use of automated deep fryers has the advantage of being regulated and helps avoid the oil in use reaching smoke point.
Also, use of cooking thermometers is advised.
It’s a beautiful Friday. I love you. I love your health. Take heed.
Your favourite family physician,