Sauté with Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Boiling is not the only way to cook vegetables; sautéing in oil is another. Sautéing in oil can increase the absorption of lycopene found in carrots and certain other vegetables by as much as five times. Prof. Hiroshi Maeda of Kumamoto University suggested what oils to use.

Oils sold in today’s markets are almost invariably clear and pleasant to the eye. They can include corn oil, safflower oil and rapeseed oil.

“Plant seeds are loaded with powerful antioxidants and radical-eliminating compounds that protect the lipids and DNA of the seeds’ nutrients. However, in the process of refining the seed oils to remove color, acids and smell to produce the clear transparent oil that customers prefer, the anti-peroxide radical benefits are sometimes eliminated, says Maeda.

Virgin or extra-virgin olive oil and unrefined pressed seed oils such as sesame oil are said to have strong peroxide radical eliminating benefits. Such oils maintain the color and aroma of their main ingredient. Because these oils are unprocessed, cholesterol-reducing linoleic acid, lipid peroxide-inhibiting vitamin E, as well as many other vitamins, minerals and antioxidant compound remain in their natural state. Powerful natural antioxidants from the seeds themselves remain in the oils, preventing such easily oxidized compounds such as linoleic and oleic acids from oxidation and ensuring that their potency is not diminished during storage.

So, if you are going to sauté or fry your vegetables in oil, it makes sense to choose an unprocessed oil that adds antioxidants, doubling the benefits.

Unprocessed virgin oils are highly recommended for burdock root and carrot kinpira, as well as other dishes. You will not only get the antioxidant benefits of the vegetable themselves, but the double advantage of the peroxide radical-eliminating benefits of the oil, as well.

To be continued

(Translated by Roy Mashima)

(The information provided should not be construed as medical advice or instruction. Consult your physician before attempting any new program. Readers who fail to consult appropriate health authorities assume the risk of developing serious medical conditions.)


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