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Oils for health - olive, peanut, soy, sunflower and corn
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Olive oil

Olive oil is the richest in monounsaturated fatty acid among all the oils. It can be used for frying, flavoring and salad dressing.

It is famous as the predominant oil in the healthy Mediterranean diet - many people in Mediterranean countries who use a lot of olive oil have statistically lower rates of heart disease.

Monounsaturated fatty acids can help lower the LDL or "bad" cholesterol, while raising the high-density lipoprotein or "good" cholesterol. Eating it often can prevent hardening of the arteries and related diseases, as well as inflammation of the gallbladder and gallstones.

Olive oil contains vitamins A, D, E, K and carotene that can help improve digestion, promote calcium retention in the bones and delay brain shrinkage. The vitamin E in olive oil is not as rich as the vitamin in bean oil and peanut oil.


Cooking with lard is very popular in China, though cooking with butter is far less common than it is in the West.

Lard has become notorious as a very unhealthy food as it contributes to high blood pressure, high blood fat and high cholesterol since it is rich in saturated fatty acids from animal fat.

Lard is rendered fat from pork. Too much contributes to hardening of the arteries, and weight gain.

(Shanghai Daily September 16, 2008)

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