Both canola and vegetable oils have plant origin.Canola oil is made genetically while vegetable oil is formed by direct extraction from different plants.
Canola and vegetable oil may seem interchangeable, but they actually have different qualities when it comes to nutrition and best use.
In this article, we will compare the pros and cons of Canola oil and Vegetable oil, so you can decide which oil is best for you:
Canola oil is one of the commonly used vegetable oil. It is extracted from canola seeds. Canola oil is obtained by genetically modified rapeseed plants. The name canola comes from 'Canada' and 'ola' meaning oil.
Genetic modification is carried out to improve oil quality. Canola crops are used to create canola oil, canola meal used as animal feed. Canola oil can also be used as fuel. Canola oil is made by a refining process consisting of seed cleaning, conditioning, cooking, and pressing. The solvent extracted undergoes a refining process to produce oil.
Unlike other vegetable oils, canola oil is not rich in nutrients. During the refining process, it loses most of its useful ingredients and contents.
The following are its ingredients in one tablespoon of canola oil: 124 calories, Vitamin E, Vitamin k, 7% saturated fat, 64% monounsaturated fat, 28% polyunsaturated fat. Apart from these, canola oil lacks vitamins and minerals.
Canola Oil Pros
- Canola oil has healthy unsaturated fats that protect against heart diseases. E.g omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
- It has a high smoke point resulting in better cooking. Smokin point is the temperature at which oil degrades.
- It has a unique fatty acid profile having more unsaturated fats like omega-3 and omega-6.
- It is also being used in industries like biodiesel.
- Canola oil is less likely to be rancid. Rancidity is the oxidation of oil leaving it unsuitable for usage.
Canola Oil Cons
- High omega-6 concentration.
- Less beneficial than omega-3s.
- It has been a good example of genetically engineered cooking oil. But one major side effect is that it losses the most useful nutrients during this process.
- Heat and chemical waste products production: During its production is associated with the production of unwanted heat and chemical waste which poses a serious challenge to the environment.
- Because of oxidative properties, it is one of the potential cause of the Increased inflammatory reactions in the body.
- Negative impact on memory.
- Some studies impact negatively on human memory.
- Belly fat is associated with many health problems.
Oil which is obtained from different plant sources such as nuts, seeds, cereals, fruits, and grains in any form is termed as vegetable oil.
Almost all major cooking oils are vegetable oils, leaving few only oils that are derived from animal sources. Vegetable oils are derived either in liquid or in solid condition at room temperature. Another important fact is that vegetable oils don't need to be edible.
There are a lot of examples of oil that are derived from vegetable sources but are not edible and unfit for human consumption. Fat is the main component in the biochemical makeup of these oils. In fats, more than 95% contribution is from triacylglycerols and fatty acids.
Vegetable oils are very commonly used in our daily life.
Canola oil, corn oil, palm oil, peanut oil, and soybeans oil are a few of the prominent examples of vegetable oils. Edible oils from this category are used for cooking purposes. Other common uses include oil painting, wood finishing, medical uses, and also used as fuel.
Vegetable Oil Pros
- Most of the vegetable oils are edible hence used for cooking purposes.
- These oils have natural flavor.
- Most exist in liquid form at room temperature, making it easier to use in household uses.
- Vegetable oils are considered to be good fats as they have less LDL content, so are beneficial for health.
- Antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties of vegetable oil make it a perfect choice to clear harmful free radical groups from the body.
- Vegetable oil can be used in place of canola oil.
Vegetable Oil Cons
- They are obtained from the extraction of different vegetable sources so, exact proportion and composition can not be determined.
- Vegetable oils have low boiling points hence cannot be a good choice for frying purposes.
- More prone to be rancid. So they need to be stored properly.
- Extra virgin varieties of this oil are very expensive.
How to Choose
What is the Difference?
- Everyone uses some kind of oil for cooking. Both canola oil and vegetable oil have the same origin, same pale color, and neutral flavor. Both boil at high temperatures making them suitable for frying.
- Canola oil has more monounsaturated fats and less saturated fats. Vegetable oil is a mixture of different oils so the exact composition of different fats can not be known. The ratio of saturated and unsaturated fats varies.
- Vegetable oil can undergo rancidity (the breakdown of oil through oxidation) leaving them unsuitable for use. Canola oil is less likely to have rancidity.
- Canola oil is made by genetic modification while vegetable oils are extracted through different vegetable sources as such.
- Canola oil is highly refined and expensive while vegetable oils are natural and less expensive.
Which Is Right for You?
- Although both vegetable and canola oils are plant-based oils.
- But canola oil is made with genetic engineering having more unsaturated fats. Omega-3 and omega-6 are unsaturated essential fatty acids.
- Omega-3 fatty acids are healthy and decrease the risk factors of heart diseases. It decreases bad cholesterol (LDL) and increases good cholesterol (HDL).
- Vegetable oils have a mixture of many plant-based oils.
- The composition and proportion of fats remain unspecified, so we can't find out what type of oil is being used.
- Canola oil can be heated at a different temperature, so the best choice for cooking. lt is better to use in most of the cases as compared to vegetable oil. Although their long term safety is yet to be proved.
Canola oil contains more unsaturated fats making it healthy. The number of fats in vegetable oils can not be anticipated. Both can be used for cooking purposes as they have similar properties. Both can be used alternatively but canola oil is more advantageous because of unsaturated fats.
If saturated fats concern you then canola oil is the best option to opt for. Otherwise, vegetable oil is as good as canola oil. It is better to use canola oil as compared to vegetable oil.
-  ^ Time.com: The 10 Healthiest and Least Healthy Oils to Cook With
-  ^ Healthline: Canola Oil vs. Vegetable Oil: Healthier Cooking Option