Canola vs. Olive: A Battle of the Oils
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olive oil

Due to the popularity and health benefits of the Mediterranean Diet, olive oil has become increasingly popular in the American diet. It’s often served with bread, tossed with vegetables and drizzled over salads. We’ve been told that olive oil is the “healthiest” oil, but is this true?

In a recent Reader’s Digest article, The Great Olive Oil Misconception, Dr. Dean Ornish examines the healthfulness of olive oil vs. canola oil. Dr. Ornish is the founder and president of the nonprofit Preventive Medicine Research Institute and clinical professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. In this article, he reports that canola oil is superior to olive oil for a variety of different reasons, including:

  • Olive oil contains 14 percent saturated fat, while canola oil contains only 7 percent saturated fat. Saturated fat is associated with cardiovascular disease and raises cholesterol.
  • When comparing the effects of canola oil vs. olive oil, canola oil consumption results in lower LDL cholesterol levels.
  • Olive oil consumption can reduce blood flow to different parts of your body, while canola oil does not.

Canola oil is rich in heart-healthy unsaturated fat and is a smart choice to cook with or dress foods. Incorporate a variety of good fats into your diet, including canola oil, olive oil, avocados, nuts and seeds.