The 8 Best Keto Friendly Oils

Olive oil, MCT oil, and avocado oil are some of the best keto friendly oils.
Keto Friendly Oils
 

The keto diet entails lowering your dietary intake of carbs down to 5% of your daily caloric consumption. At the same time, you up the amount of fat that you consume. But not all fat is created equal! Some are so good that you should take supplements just to reap their rewards; others are so bad you should avoid them like any car that has a “Police Lives Matter” bumper sticker. Here’s a run down of all the keto friendly oils as well as some oils to avoid.

Trans Fats

Trans Fatty Acids

Yes, there are naturally occuring trans fats. As explained by the American Heart Association (AHA), they're found in the guts of some animals and foods made out of these animals (like dairy and beef). That's right, if you're asking, "Got milk?" or, "Where's the beef?" the answer is, "Hanging out with trace amounts of naturally occuring trans fats."

Then there’s artificial trans fats (AKA "partially hydrogenated oils" AKA, as reported by the AHA, not Generally Recognized as Safe in human food since November 2013 according to the FDA). Woof, that last one is bad a nickname as “the prison industrial complex”. As the AHA explains, trans fats are created when hydrogen is added to liquid vegetable oils. This is done to make the oils more solid. These oils are easy to use, inexpensive, and have a long shelf life. They also imbue foods with desirable flavor and texture. They're used by many commercials eateries to deep-fry foods because trans fats can be reused.

Wow, whatever did trans fatty acids do to earn the nickname "not Generally Recognized as Safe by the FDA"?! Trans fats increase your bad cholesterol, lower your good cholesterol, increase your risk of heart disease and stroke, and their consumption correlates with increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Woof! No wonder the nickname trans fats have is almost as “The Prison Industrial Complex”! They’re a plague on the body just like systemic racism is a plague upon the American soul. But why would people eat trans fats (or allow systemic racism???)???

According to the AHA, before the 90s, there was little research done into trans fats. But then the research started trickling in and scientists started shouting, "WAKE UP AMERICA!" and since then the consumption of trans fats has decreased. And, as for systemic racism, it's caused by ingrained patterns of thought that permeate our institutions by virtue of power being held in the hands of those who, consciously or unconsciously, harbor bigoted beliefs. That’s why it’s important for white people to use their privilege to shout, “WAKE UP AMERICA!” and dismantle internal and external structures of oppression.

Like systemic racism, trans fats are sneaky! Nutritional labels can claim that they have 0 trans fats so long as they contain under .5 grams of trans fats per serving. So, what can you do? Check ingredient lists for "partially hydrogenated oils". And where will you find trans fats? Processed foods, fried foods, and baked goods, margarine and other spreads, frozen pizza, cookies, cakes, etc. And where will you find systemic racism? In almost every institution in the US! WAKE UP AMERICA!

Sunflower Seed Oil

Vegetable and Seed Oils

If you're asking, "Are vegetable and seed oils bad for you health?" Healthline has the answer: yes! And if you’re asking is systemic racism bad for America, the answer’s the same: yes! Omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids are what's known as "essential fatty acids". You need some of them in your diet because they're not naturally produced by the human body. The ideal ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 is 1 to 1. Another question Healthline asks is, "Why is giving birth in the U.S. so dangerous for women of color?" Hmmm? Yesssss? Who needs to wake up? AMERICA!

As explained by Healthline, this past century has seen people consuming too much omega-6, which is thought to contribute to chronic inflammation (stress upon the body). Healthline goes on to explain that chronic inflammation is an underlying factor in most illnesses that plague the Western world. That includes cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, and arthritis. As for women of color dying and suffering disproportionately during birth, the answer is simple: systemic racism. WHAT DID YOU THINK IT WAS GOING TO BE?!

When it comes to chronic inflammation, correlation does not imply causation, and more research is certainly needed, but if chronic inflammation is of concern to you, which it should be, use the following oils sparingly.

  • Soybean oil
  • Canola oil
  • Corn oil
  • Cottonseed oil
  • Sunflower oil
  • Peanut oil
  • Sesame oil
  • Rice bran oil

Steering clear of systemic racism, however, is much more challenging than steering clear of vegetable and seed oils!

 Saturated and Unsaturated Fats

Saturated vs Unsaturated Fats

Generally, saturated and unsaturated fats are pitted against each other (much like poor white people and poor people of color are pitted against each other by powerful elites). Saturated fats have more fatty acid molecules without double bonds. The consensus among scientists is that there's a causal relationship between saturated fat consumption and cardiovascular disease.

Unsaturated fat is fat that has at least one bond within the fatty acid chain. A fatty acid chain can be either monounsaturated (one double bond) or polyunsaturated (more than one double bond). As a result of their structures, saturated fats (like butter) are solid at room temperature, whereas unsaturated fats (like olive oil) are liquid at room temperature.

Monounsaturated fats are said to ward off cardiovascular disease, poor cholesterol, cancer, neurodegenerative diseases (like Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s), and type 2 diabetes. Polyunsaturated fats are associated with a reduced likelihood of developing certain types of cancer, although more research is needed. For these reasons, polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats are called “good fats” while saturated fats are called “bad fats”. There is no good systemic racism; IT’S ALL BAD!

Olive Oil

Olive Oil

As explained by Healthline, there are 11 proven benefits of olive oil. Olive oil is 73% oleic acid, a monounsaturated fat. Oleic acid has been linked to reduced inflammation and may ward off cancer. Olive oil is high in antioxidants, which may fight off chronic disease. Olive oil is also a heart disease deterrent. It’s definitely one of the best keto friendly oils thanks to all its health benefits! Sure, you need to consume plenty of healthy fats, especially on the ketogenic diet, but you need to monitor your fat intake as much as you monitor net carbs (the amount of carbs that count toward whether or not you’ll be in ketosis, which is the total number of carbs minus sugar alcohol and fiber.)

The best type of olive oil to get is "extra virgin". And the best type of systemic racism is none at all. WHERE DID YOU THINK THAT SENTENCE WAS GOING?! Sometimes other oils are mixed into olive oil that claims to be extra virgin olive oil, so make sure to check ingredient labels. This is similar to how often systemic racism is mixed with class, gender, sexuality, etc. So, make sure to check analyses for intersectionality!

Grape Seed Oil

Alternative Oils

No, alternative oils isn’t a grunge band to emerge from 90s Seattle. Instead, alternative oils are keto friendly oils that you need because you need other types of cooking oils! When counting down the 10 best and worst oils for your health, Everyday Health explains that olive oil has a low smoke point, which is the temperature at which oil starts to smoke. That means you can’t really fry things in it. Canola oil is a good alternative because it has a higher smoke point than olive oil, so you can use it for high heat cooking.

Everyday Health also reported that, "In 2006, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) decided that manufacturers could claim that 1 1/2 tablespoons of canola oil a day may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease when used instead of saturated fat." Just like it’s important to conduct an audit of one’s diet to decrease the amount of unhealthy fats one consumes, it’s also important to conduct an audit of one’s unconscious to decrease the amount of prejudiced beliefs that one holds. That’s the best way to reduce chronic inflammation and chronic discrimination!

There are other oils you can use, according to Everyday Health. Flaxseed oil,, which is high in omega-3s, and can go into smoothies or salads. Avocado oil is high in monounsaturated fat and has a high smoke point, so you can use it to stir-fry, saute, and even sear! Walnut’s aren’t  just the primary ingredient in one of the 8 keto nut butters you should be eating. They also produce an oils that’s high in omega-3s, so feel free to add it to anything that would taste better nuttier. Sesame oil is another olive oil alternative; you can be use it to stir-fry. Lastly, Grapeseed oil also has a high smoke point, so you can cook and grill with it. Meanwhile, the alternative to systemic racism is a just society. When are you waking up, America? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

 

MCT Oil

MCT stands for medium chain triglycerides. There are many reasons why you should take MCT oil. The shorter length of MCT makes them more digestible. Some benefits associated with MCT oil is weight loss, managing Alzheimer's, and potentially fighting off heart disease.  MCT is fast fuel because of the shorter chains. MCT is also said to reduce lactic build up, which is good news for athletes! Coconut oil and palm oil contain MCT, but the best way to get MCT is as an Oil because coconuts and palm have other types of fats in them as well. It’s just like how some institutions have systemic racism, but also systemic sexism, ableism, ageism, etc. WAKE UP AMERICA; WE GOT A LONG WAY TO GO! And healthy oils like MCT and olive oil can help get you there!