Friday, May 6, 2011

Safflower Oil

Add safflower oil to your cooking arsenal. A daily dose may boost “good” HDL cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease.
As much as I love olive oil, some recipes can’t handle the robust flavor of the heart-healthy oil. In those cases, you may want to reach for safflower oil instead. According to a study in the journal Clinical Nutrition, a daily dose of the mild-tasting oil may improve measures of metabolic syndrome — a cluster of symptoms like obesity, high cholesterol and glucose intolerance that increase the risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

Those who took 1 2/3 teaspoons of safflower oil every day for 16 weeks experienced better blood sugar, higher levels of “good” HDL cholesterol and lower levels of C-reactive protein, an inflammation marker associated with heart attack risk.
Safflower oil is a polyunsaturated fat that contains essential omega-6 fatty acids. Swapping out trans fats and saturated fats for mono- and polyunsaturated ones can help protect against heart disease — when eaten in moderation. Keep your polyunsaturated fat intake below 10 percent of your calories a day.

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