Cold Pressed Oils Are Ayurveda’s Best-Kept Secret & Need to Be in Your Kitchen
Cold pressed oils – some of you may have heard this term before, while it may be completely unknown for the rest. For the uninitiated, cold pressed oils are produced using low-heat methods and are superior in quality compared to regular oils. Our ancestors primarily consumed cold pressed oils until about 50 years ago, when large-scale manufacturers of refined oils took over the market.
With better access to current information and greater awareness among people, the focus is on returning to our roots. Cold pressed oil is more nutritious and beneficial than regular oil, which is artificially heated, has modified properties, and is stripped of all nutritional value.
How is Cold Pressed Oil Produced?
If we look at the most traditional way of oil extraction, it involves a long cylindrical contraption called ghaani. Oil seeds were placed in the ghaani and grounded with a pestle until they started secreting oil. The residue was used as fodder for cattle.
This process has now been improvised. The seeds are now dropped and crushed in a cylinder that contains a rotating screw. This screw grinds and crushes the seeds until the oil is extracted. As the screw crushes the seeds, heat is generated because of the friction between the screw and the seeds. However, this does not affect the quality of oil in any way.
You may be thinking as to why this sudden shift to cold pressed oil? What is so special about it? To answer your questions, here are a few reasons why you should be moving to cold pressed oil.
1.It’s a Boon for Your Immune System
Oil, in its natural composition, contains several benefiting components and antioxidants. These strengthen the body’s immunity. But, the normal oil we consume is processed and refined, and devoid of these components.
Consuming cold pressed oils enhances your immunity. The antioxidants in them trigger the healing and anti-inflammation processes within our body. They fight the harmful free radicals and prevent the growth of tumors.
Cold pressed olive oil is rich in Vitamin E, which is a good source of oleic acid that strengthens the immune system. Coconut oil contains medium chain triglycerides (MCT) that can have therapeutic effects on several brain disorders. 50% of the MCTs found in coconut oil are lauric acid. The body converts lauric acid into Monolaurin, which fights herpes, influenza, measles, AIDS, and other viruses. This metabolized component also kills a number of bacteria such as Helicobacter pylori, which is known to cause stomach ulcers. The antimicrobial, antifungal properties in cold pressed oils make them a boon for your immune system.
2.They Are Your Heart’s Best Friends
Various studies have revealed that cold pressed oils can lower the risk of heart diseases significantly. As discussed above, cold-pressed coconut oil contains a lot of medium-chain triglycerides. These can significantly increase HDL levels, the good cholesterol, without increasing LDL, the harmful cholesterol. Test results reveal that cold pressed coconut oil lowers the level of blood fibrinogen and lipoprotein (a), the markers of heart attack risk.
Cold-pressed groundnut oil is also good for the heart and comes suffused with vitamins and minerals. Groundnuts with high Niacin are also good to stabilize sugars. So, you can safely establish that cold-pressed oils are a far more beneficial option for your heart.
3.They Aid Weight Loss
Cold pressed oils aid weight loss. The MCTs from them are effectively used by the body as energy sources, and therefore, have less chances of being stored in the fatty tissues. Besides, MCTs increase the body’s metabolic rate and accelerates fat loss. This leads to lasting energy without weight gain. Hence, coconut oil is often recommended for losing fat around the abdominal area.
4.They Can Relax and Rejuvenate Tired Skin
We all know how too much oily food can be bad for our skin and cause breakouts. What if we could reverse the trend? With cold pressed oils you can. Because they come loaded with antioxidants, these oil can keep the skin supple and youthful, and save you a lot of money on anti-ageing creams.
Cold pressed oils like almond, jojoba, and rose-hip seeds oil are used extensively in cosmetic and aromatherapy products. Wouldn’t it be better to derive the benefits from the most authentic source itself? Apply these orally or consume two-five teaspoonful daily. You will see a radical transformation in your skin.
The Most Important Question: Can You Cook with Cold Pressed Oil?
We are going to take the bull straight by its horns. Not all cold pressed oils can handle the pressures and heat that come with cooking. As they contain unsaturated fat, they are most likely to degrade when heated. This makes cold-pressed oils perfect for using as salad dressings and drizzling over cooked food.
However, if you are keen on going full-speed ahead with using cold-pressed oils, we suggest you opt for olive oil, which can handle the high temperatures of grilling and sautéing. Virgin coconut oil is also suitable for culinary purposes as it has high heat tolerance.
While we are on the topic of alternating oil, a safety note should also be mentioned. Individuals with diabetes and liver diseases should avoid cold-pressed oils or at least consult a physician before consuming them as the MCTs can lead to a pile-up of harmful acids in the body and cause vomiting, nausea, and in extreme cases, even coma.
How to Increase the Shelf-life of Cold Pressed Oils?
Though they’re a storehouse of nutrients, cold-pressed oils are also often claimed to have a short shelf life. But, recent developments suggest that if stored in clay utensils, cold pressed oils can easily last a few months. To be on the safer side though, buy cold-pressed oils in small quantities and store them away from light and high temperatures in air-tight containers. Consume within three months of purchase.
Cold pressed oils are one of Ayurveda’s best secrets. Buy organically-sourced cold pressed oils to strengthen your immune system, fight infection, and get a healthy body and mind.