Hi everybody,  Kris from Custom Fitness here, your personal trainer in Amarillo. I wanted to share some tips on how to cook a little bit a healthier by using healthy oils.  If you have any questions about today’s blog or are looking for some recipes to get started, give us a call: 806-322-3188.

Using oils in your cooking can be a healthy part of your diet. Our bodies actually need some healthy fats throughout the day and we can get those from a variety of sources like nuts, seeds, oils, avocados, and cheese. Oils are something that some people understand while others feel lost about how to incorporate them. I thought I might through some stuff there today and see if we can clear up there just a little bit of the confusion.

Typically when someone is going to be cooking meat (e.x. Chicken, ground beef, turkey, etc.) they are going to put something in the pan before they stick the protein in to cook, right? **Quick note: For stick pans, the non-stick coating actually releases toxins into your food. More toxins will seep into your cooking if the coating flakes or is scraped off.  If possible you want to upgrade your pans to a stainless steel version ASAP. **

If you’re using tools where you don’t need to add oil when you are cooking, then you want to find other ways to incorporate healthy fats and oils  to in your diet since your body does need them to operate optimally.  A lot of people use butter, but try and make it a grass-fed butter, you can also do a clarified, non-soy, non-dairy butter like Ghee.  We’ll save butter for another time. Let’s look at oils.

The store shelves are lined with an array of oils out there: coconut, olive, avocado, etc. Once you choose the right oil for your meal, my first tip is to pre-heat your pan.  A lot of times you pull the pan out of the cabinet, put it on the stove, pour in your oils, and then you spend the next 10 minutes trying to swish it around the the pan hoping that it coats evenly. When your pan finally is ready, you actually have at least 2 – 3 times the amount of oil that you need because you were trying to coat the pan while it was cool.

Instead, preheat the pan.When you are ready to pour the oil, you’ll be adding much less and it will actually coat everything because the oil thins and moves once it is warm.  You want to cut down how much you pour by 2 to 3 times the amount that you normally would. This also helps us not go overboard on healthy fats – one of those things where we need to consume them in moderation.

Next tip is to not let the oil smoke. Have you ever cooked something like olive oil or canola oil and while you’re waiting for the stove to heat up, you notice a smokey smell in the room and you see smoke rising from the oil?  You’ve hit the smoke point. This is when you have actually turned that once healthy fat into a trans fat. By the time that you start to digest it, your body is going to see that as an Invader and  set up an inflammatory response to attack it. Your intestines are going to start to inflame (something that is not very comfortable) by swelling to keep out the food that you just put in your body.

to rather than nourishment it looks like an enemy. so we want to make sure that we don’t get to that smoke point.

Third tip: be selective when choosing an oil. If you are using an olive oil, the type you buy is going to warrant some research. Often the olive oil we see in stores has been cut with lesser oils or other products, but still sold at a premium. Canola oil, most people do not realize, is manufactured from corn.  Corn is highly inflammatory, so that is also not a great choice.  Canola is one of the cheaper oils and that should make you wary about the quality of the corn they are harvesting for it.

Better choices for cooking would be coconut or avocado oils.

Both of these are high heat oils; meaning you can cook with them on the stove, you can cook with them in the oven, you can cook with them in the microwave, and they will maintain their nutrient structure.  Eating foods with a broken nutrient structure means your body receives no benefit from it, so you want to maintain the structure at all costs.

If you were to use hemp or flaxseed oil, they cannot be heated at all (or will sacrifice their nutritional properties).  They should be used cold or at room temperature. You could use these oils in something  like a salad dressing or on a baked potato.  You aren’t cooking with them or heating them up, but just taking advantage of the nutrition by making it as a lagniappe like a dressing.

Quick recap:

  • If you’re cooking with oils, that’s great. You don’t have to cook with them if you feel uncomfortable coating your pan.  There are plenty of other ways to add healthy fat in your diet, but we do need some healthy fat in the diet to keep our bodies functioning.  
  • If you are cooking with oils, make sure to preheat the pan to  get it nice and warm before you add the oil. This means you won’t need to use quite as much of it.
  • Then we would make sure that oils don’t come to a smoke point.
  • Be selective in the oils you choose and know the temperature they can tolerate to preserve the nutritional benefits.  For instance, if you’ve seen the spray oil cans, on the back of the can it will tell you if you should cook it over high heat, medium heat, or low heat. One size does not fit all.  If you buy oil in the freezer section or refrigerated section that oil probably does not need to be heated. Definitely do your research on what you are buying, or feel free to give us a call or comment and we will be happy to help you out. I’ve been a personal trainer in Amarillo for almost 20 years and I can give you some insight to make grocery shopping a little easier.

We want to make sure the foods you are eating are healthy for you. We, at Custom Fitness,  know that you can drastically change your life by eating real food, doing real exercise, and make a few small changes here and there.  We all tend to live in the same habits day in and day out. Change seems scary at first, sure, but as you begin to form these changes into a habit, they become a little easier everyday. Take my Facebook Live videos for instance. They were something that I was not very comfortable with in the beginning. Getting in front of  a camera and talking when there’s no one actually asking me questions, freaks me out, but since I’ve started it isn’t nearly as daunting as I used to think it was.

The same is true of habit coaching. Clients come in and are paired with their coach. They work together through issues and the coach constantly tweaks the programs to create a customized version of what the client’s body or mind needs in that moment of their life.Then session by session the clients begin to form habits and relationships, and everyday what was once challenging and overwhelming, becomes something to look forward to.

If you’re tired of trying all this hit-and-miss fitness stuff, you’re tired of you know not really understanding the nutrition side of the puzzle, you’re tired of vetting fitness hacks through Google, or waiting for your friends to tell you what worked for them, then we want to talk to you.  We can create a customized program for you and it will drastically change your life. We offer a 21-day guarantee where you can try us out to see if we are the right fit for you. We want to make sure that you are happy here by getting everything that you need. We offer fitness training, nutrition counseling, group classes, accountability, and more.  If you’d like to know more, about our customized to you approach, comment below or contact us at 806-322-3188 or info@customfitness.biz.  At Custom Fitness, we are YOUR personal trainers in Amarillo. See you tomorrow!