Rapeseed oil is extracted from the black-colored seeds of a plant having the same name, which is actually related to kale, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts and other vegetables from the brassica family. In the past, rapeseed oil has always been overshadowed by more popular oils such as sunflower oil and olive oil, although these days it’s getting more and more of its much-deserved spotlight — courtesy of celebrities and chefs raving about it. By the way, rapeseed oil is also sometimes referred to as canola oil or simply vegetable oil.
It’s true that rapeseed oil costs a little more than other healthy oils on today’s market. However, the added cost is actually a small price to pay in exchange for the many different wonderful benefits it offers. For instance, it’s one of the best vegetable oils for cooking as it possesses a high smoke point — it can withstand high temperatures before it starts to burn and give off smoke. To give you a clearer picture: olive oil will start to burn at 190°C and palm oil will start to emit smoke and leave your food tasting bad at 230°C, but rapeseed oil won’t burn until it’s exposed to 230°C.
Cooking with rapeseed oil or using it as salad dressing is a smart choice as it is packed with healthy fat and vitamin E. It is also available in varying flavors, ranging from delicate to distinctive. Just like olive oil, this particular oil also comes in variants such as virgin and extra virgin, although cold-pressed rapeseed oil tends to be produced in smaller quantities. The kinds that are readily available in most supermarkets are refined — but don’t stay away from them as they are just as superb as cold-pressed ones for cooking and other practical uses.
Let us take a closer look at some of the reasons why there should be a bottle of rapeseed oil in your abode:
It Contains the Least Amount of Saturated Fats of All Vegetable Oils
Saturated fats are the kinds that stay solid at room temperature and can leave your arteries all clogged up — so you want to limit your consumption of anything with saturated fats to lower your risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, heart attack and stroke. According to the experts, rapeseed oil packs the least amount of saturated fats — even less than 50% of olive oil’s total content!
It’s Loaded with Healthy Fats
Not all fats are bad for you — some of them should actually be included in the diet as they help keep your brain, joints and heart in tip-top shape. These healthy fats are also known as unsaturated fats. Rapeseed oil contains impressive amounts of these unsaturated fats, such as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Here’s a fact: rapeseed oil is said to contain 10 times more omega-3 fatty acids than olive oil.
It is Ideal for Cooking a Wide Variety of Healthy Dishes
Just like what’s tackled before, rapeseed oil has a high smoking point, making it perfect for kitchen use. Provided that you won’t exceed 230°C, it’s not going to leave your gastronomic masterpieces taste burnt. Go ahead and use rapeseed oil for sautéing broccoli and mushrooms, or deep frying sweet potatoes and breaded zucchini strips. The healthy oil is also excellent for baking and grilling!
It’s a Wonderful Source of Vitamin E
Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps prevent inflammation as well as protect the cells of your body from damaging free radicals. Guess what? There’s plenty of the said nutrient in rapeseed oil! Thanks to its rich vitamin E content, including rapeseed oil in the diet can prevent cataracts, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease, and it can lower bad cholesterol levels and ward off certain cancers too. Rapeseed oil may also be applied topically as an anti-aging solution!