The Health Benefits of Canola Oil

Canola oil has numerous health benefits because of its low percentage of saturated fat, and high percentage of omega-3s.  Additionally, it is great to cook with.


Canola is the vegetable oil lowest in saturated fats and helps lower cholesterol…

All vegetable oils contain a mix of polyunsaturated, monounsaturated, and saturated fatty acids. Canola oil consists mostly of monounsaturated fats (61 percent, almost as much as olive oil) and polyunsaturated fats (32 percent). Of all vegetable oils, it is lowest in saturated fats (7 percent). And, notably, it is second highest in alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), an omega-3 polyunsaturated fat related to the omega-3s in fish (11 percent ALA, compared to 57 percent in flaxseed oil). In contrast, olive, corn, safflower, and sunflower oils contain just 1 percent ALA.

Like many other plant foods, canola oil contains phytosterols (such as beta-sitosterol), which lower cholesterol, along with some vitamin E and K.


Canola oil has heart benefits…

Several studies since then have also shown that canola oil, when substituted for saturated fats, has heart benefits. For example, in a small study in the Journal of Internal Medicine in 2011, a high canola oil diet (from a spread) lowered LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and triglycerides in people with high cholesterol after three weeks. And a review of 40 studies in Nutrition Reviews in 2013 linked canola-based diets to reduced LDL oxidation (oxidation makes LDL more harmful) and decreased blood clotting, compared to saturated-fat-based diets.

The FDA says about canola oil: “Limited and not conclusive scientific evidence suggests that eating about 1.5 tablespoons (19 grams) of canola oil daily may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease due to the unsaturated fat content in canola oil. To achieve this possible benefit, canola oil is to replace a similar amount of saturated fat and not increase the total number of calories you eat in a day.”


Canola oil has great cooking properties…

Canola oil is light, clear and has a mild flavour that does not interfere with the taste of baked goods. It blends easily with other ingredients to produce a moist product with soft texture.

Any great salad deserves a great vinaigrette! A basic vinaigrette blends an acid, usually vinegar, lemon juice, etc., with oil, salt, pepper and other seasonings. Canola oil, which is light in colour, texture, and taste is ideal for vinaigrettes. It allows for a smooth mouth feel without heaviness. The vinaigrette will remain clear and free running when refrigerated because of the lower saturated fat content of canola oil.

The smoke point of an oil is the temperature at which the oil begins to smoke.. Canola oil has a high smoke point 468 degrees F (242 degrees C). Oil that has been used previously will have a lower smoke point.