Vegetable oils such as mustard seed oil, peanut oil, sunflower oil, and coconut oil have traditionally been part of our everyday diet across cultures. Be it for sauteing, frying or coating, vegetable oils are one of the most common cooking oils used in our kitchens. We often underestimate the benefits associated with such locally produced oils. A Harvard University-backed EAT Lancet report released earlier this year identified a ‘Planetary Health Diet’, which stated that total consumption of oils & fats should be restricted to about 10 teaspoons/day, which includes visible fat from home cooked food and invisible fat from local eateries and packaged food. As per the report, more than half of fat/oil, needs to be sourced from variety of unsaturated fats/oils provided by vegetable sources. While the report focuses on balanced and wholesome diet concept which includes whole grains, plant proteins (beans, lentils, pulses), some meat, dairy, fruit, and vegetables – favouring traditional Indian diet, but emphasis on plant-based fats is notable. It highlights that a diet rich in plant-based foods with fewer foods from animal sources, confers improved health as well as environmental benefits.
(Also read: The Best Cooking Oils for Your Health)