Most of us buy genetically modified (GM) soybean oil thinking that it is healthier than the conventional soybean oil. But according to a study published in the Nature Scientific Reports Journal, genetically modified soybean oil takes a toll on the liver, a report by the Hindustan Times said.
According to the University of California- Riverside researchers, while GM soybean oil induces lesser obesity and insulin resistance than conventional soybean oil, its effect on diabetes and fatty liver are similar to those of conventional soybean oil.
Effects of the GM soy oil in comparison to other oils
Plenish is a genetically modified soybean oil which was released by a company in 2014. Plenish, according to researchers is engineered to have low linoleic acid, resulting in oil that has a similar composition to olive oil. Olive oil is the base of Mediterranean diet and is considered helpful to maintain good health. The researchers also compared the long-term metabolic effects of Plenish to those of soybean oil.
Both Plenish and conventional soybean oil was compared to coconut oil. Coconut oil is rich in saturated fatty acids and it causes the least weight gain among all the tested high-fat diets. According to the lead researcher Francis Sladek, all the three oils raised cholesterol levels in the liver and blood. Hence, the myth is busted that soybean oil reduces cholesterol levels.
Another researcher, Poonamjot Deol said, “In our mouse experiments, olive oil produces essentially identical effects as Plenish, more obesity than coconut oil, although less than conventional soybean oil – and fatty livers, which was surprising as olive oil is typically considered to be the healthiest of all vegetable oils.”
Francis Sladek said, “Our findings do not necessarily relate to other soybean products like soy sauce, tofu or soy milk – products which are largely from the water-soluble compartments of the soybean. Oil, on the other hand, is from the fat-soluble compartment of soybean.”
Olive oil was also compared to genetically modified soybean oil and conventional soybean oil. Both of these oils are high in oleic acid. Oleic acid is a fatty acid which is believed to reduce blood pressure and reduce weight. Through an experiment, the researchers have found that olive oil produced identically similar effects as the GM soybean oil – more obesity than coconut oil.
Different cultures in India cook their meals in different oil. In Kerala it is coconut oil, in Andhra and Rajasthan it’s sesame oil and mustard oil is used in the east. Sunflower oil is rich in Vitamin E. It has a high smoking point which means that it can retain its nutritional content at higher temperatures. Yet, people with high diabetes should be careful about sunflower oil as it may lead to the possibility of increasing sugar level. Canola oil, made from crushed seeds of the canola plant is said to be healthiest among all cooking oils. It has the lowest content of saturated fat, rich in monounsaturated fat and high in Omega 3.
The Logical Indian urges its community members to ensure that they adopt healthy eating habits and incorporate good oils into their diet which is rich in fatty acids and nutrient content such as Omega 3.