Don’t try this at home!
Pour a tablespoon of an omega 6 rich oil (like soybean or corn oil) in a pan. Turn the heat to medium-high. Within a minute or so, you’ll notice that smoke creeps up and a rancid odor fills the kitchen.
You’ve just created DNA-damaging compounds called lipid oxidation products (LOPs). It’s time to toss the oil (don’t breathe the fumes!) and start over.
How Lipid Oxidation Products are Formed
Lipid oxidation products (LOPs) are created by the degradation of oils—by heat, aging or chemicals.
In our diet, lipid oxidation products (LOPs) primarily come from the heating of unstable oils especially the polyunsaturated fatty acids omega-6.
While omega-3 is also a polyunsaturated fat, research shows these long-chain fats do not generally increase oxidative stress or lipid peroxidation, but rather offer protection from degradation and rancidity. It’s important to note, however, that plant-based nutriment oils rich in omega-3’s (like flaxseed oil ) are delicate and should be used only for drizzling.
To protect yourself, opt for oils that are more stable and do not readily form lipid oxidation products (LOPs). In general, saturated fats – like grass-fed butter, lard, and coconut oil – are the best choices. See Flash Points for more information appropriate uses of culinary oils.