I was recently talking to my Mom and she had some questions about what she could cook with if she wasn’t supposed to use vegetable oils. I thought that was a great question. It’s easy to tell people not to use vegetable oils – Stop using vegetable oils they are BAD!, but it’s unfair to stop there. If you convince people to stop using vegetable oils you really need to list the healthy alternatives.

Diane Sanfilippo over at BalancedBites.com has some great information about Fats. I’m going to list the different Fats/Oils here but if you want a more comprehensive explanation please follow the link over to BalancedBites.com. She does a really nice job explaining the different Fats and why/how you should use them. It’s always good to understand WHY you are doing something. You can get even more information about the good and the bad of oils from Mark Sisson’s post “The Definitive Guide to Oils“.

Fats you should Eat

Saturated Fats for Hot Uses:

  • Coconut
  • Palm
  • Butter
  • Ghee
  • CoconutGhee (my addition)
  • Lard
  • Tallow
  • Chicken Fat (Schmaltz)
  • Lamb Fat
  • Duck Fat
  • Full Fat Dairy
  • Eggs, Meat & Seafood

If you have trouble with Coconut Oil or just don’t like the taste, you can buy the expeller pressed coconut oil. This type of Coconut Oil doesn’t have a flavor. It also seems to be easier for some people to digest. Coconut Oil that is labeled “virgin” coconut oil is the type that will have that yummy coconut flavor if that is what you are looking for. Amy D gives a great explanation of the different types of coconut oil in the comments section of my post on CoconutGhee.

Unsaturated Fats for Cold Uses
(organic, extra virgin & cold-pressed preferably) The following fats become damaged/oxidized when heated – you shouldn’t eat damaged fats.

  • Olive Oil
  • Sesame Oil
  • Nut Oils (walnut, pecan, macadamia)
  • Flaxseed Oil (okay in moderation – 1-2 tbsp./day)
  • avocado
  • nuts & seeds (including butters) – not sunflower oil

Fats You Should Avoid


  • Margarine
  • Hydrogenated or Partially Hydrogenated Oils
  • Man Made Trans-Fats (buttery spreads) – Earth Balance, Benecol, I can’t Believe It’s Not Butter etc…


  • Canola Oil (also known as Rapeseed Oil)
  • Corn Oil
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Soybean Oil
  • Grapeseed Oil
  • Sunflower Oil
  • Safflower Oil
  • Rice Bran Oil

Please read labels. You will be surprise and sad when you realize how many of these oils are in the processed food that you buy. Even the foods you think are “healthy”.

Eating out is tricky too. Most of the food you order in a restaurant is going to be made with some type of vegetable oil or soybean oil. Not good.

Please head over to BalanceBites.com so you can understand the good and the bad behind fats/oils. There is also a really neat chart of Fats/Oils as a pdf download.

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3 Responses to Fats

  1. amy d says:

    Ahhh, eating out is crazy hard. Some places still have real butter. But since everyone thinks veg oil is healthy, it makes it so hard. I carry my own little wooden salt container for my “Real Salt” to use when in restaurants. If I could just figure out some way to carry my own coconut oil (without a big mess!)…

  2. […] there. It won’t be easy but it will be worth it. Eat lots of whole, organic animal proteins, good fats, vegetables and some fruit. There is so much variety and delicious food out there, don’t […]

  3. […] what you can cook with since you just threw out all of your vegetable oils you can read my post on Fats for some healthy […]

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