5 Reasons To Eliminate Oil From Your Diet Immediately
A lot of people come to a whole foods plant-based dieting wondering, “Why no oil?”. Today we’re going to share with you 5 good reasons why you should eliminate oil from your diet right away.
We’re not perfect; we may occasionally consume a little oil if we’re eating out. It’s often unavoidable at most restaurants but the majority of our meals are home-cooked and we never use oil. We also happen to be at our ideal body weights and living free of any chronic health conditions, so we're ok with having minimal amounts on occassion. Regardless, the truth is that there’s really no benefit to eating oil and here’s why:
#1 - Oil Is Really Calorie Dense
Oil can turn something that's otherwise a healthy wonder food (such as baked potatoes) into a french-fried food from hell. One tablespoon of oil is 120 calories of pure, unadulterated fat. Compare that to an entire pound of non-starchy vegetables, which only clock in at 100 calories. Whether it comes from an olive, a coconut, or a sesame seed, all oil is highly processed and does nothing to benefit your health or actually satisfy your hunger since all the fiber has been removed.
There’s nothing wrong with eating fat; it’s part of a healthy diet. However, there’s a huge difference in a whole plant food naturally high in fat (such as nuts, seeds, or avocados) than there is in a spoonful of fat that’s been extracted from a plant. Excess fat can and will make you fat; if you’re struggling with weight, oil needs to be the first thing you eliminate.
#2 - Oil Is Harmful To Your Health
Oil isn’t just fattening and calorie-dense; it actually harms your health. There’s been a lot of debate and disagreement about that statement. We often hear that certain oils are considered “health foods”. While we can concede that if you go from eating a Standard American Diet (SAD) full of double quarter-pounders with cheese to a Mediterranean Diet that includes some extra virgin olive oil and a little seafood, then sure, it’s definitely better. But it’s not optimal and it’s certainly not a health food.
If you’re able to consume a lot of oil, maintain an ideal body weight, and stay off meds for your cholesterol, blood pressure, or anything else then you probably don’t need to concern yourself with oil. You’re probably also a unicorn. Most humans can’t survive on an oil-rich diet because it wreaks havoc on their health, which is why we are out here promoting a diet free of additional processed oil. A lot of people are under the assumption that type 2 diabetes is caused by excess sugar. While we do agree that refined sugar should also be eliminated from your diet, it’s actually excess fat that creates insulin resistance in the body, which leads to diabetes.
#3 - Oil Is Bad For Your Heart
It’s bad for overall health but it’s REALLY bad for heart health. Oil clogs your arteries, which makes your heart stop, which makes you die. That’s what it does. It’s truly the worst thing you can eat for heart health. If you have heart disease (or other chronic illnesses) and clean up your diet by removing the oil, there’s a good chance you can not only halt its progression but actually reverse it.
It’s also important to note the distinction between a plant-based diet and a vegan diet. A lot of people think that all they need to do is cut animal products out of their diet to improve their health. While that’s a great step to take for many reasons, it doesn’t mean your diet is automatically health-promoting. Oil-laden vegan junk food is still junk and it will have a negative impact on your health.
#4 - Oil Is Not A Whole Food
We’ve already established oil is not a health food; it’s a straight-up junk food. It does make you like the taste of the food you’re eating more. People like the taste of oil-rich foods because they take advantage of our body’s evolutionary mechanism to seek calorie-dense foods which would help ensure survival during leaner times in our natural history when food could be in limited supply for long intervals.
Nowadays, food isn’t as scarce. Our agricultural technology has advanced to create an abundance of food, so much that we’ve now taken to engineering processed foods containing high amounts of fat, sugar, and salt in order to make them so addictive that individuals are actually compelled to consume more of them. This drives up the profit margins for large food corporations but does so at the expense of public health. If you want to have a richer flavor from fat in your foods, focus on the whole fats that we actually did eat in our natural histories, such as nuts, seeds, and avocados. Even whole olives that contain added salt are better than eating olive oil.
#5 - Oil Is Disgusting To Cook With
Oil is disgusting and impractical to cook with; it splatters everywhere and eventually coats your kitchen surfaces (such as the range hood over your stove) in a thin film that attracts and holds dust. When we eliminated oil, we were surprised how much less frequently we had to clean those nooks and crannies in our kitchen. Our dishes and flatware clean up a lot easier too. If you’re a clean-freak (like Dillon), oil-free cooking is the cleanest way to cook. Cooking with oil can also be downright dangerous; if you’re deep-frying foods in 350-degree oil and some splatters on you, it can cause third-degree burns. It only takes one small moment of inattentiveness to cause a severe injury.
Look, we aren’t doctors. Don’t take our word for it. We recommend that you do some of the research that we did to learn for yourself the many reasons to eliminate oil from your diet. Here are a few books we recommend:
- The Starch Solution by Dr. John McDougall
- Eat More, Weigh Less by Dr. Dean Ornish
- The Cheese Trap by Dr. Neil Barnard
- Prevent And Reverse Heart Disease by Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn
These are but a few of the many resources available to help you along your journey to greater health and wellness. We also have tons of blogs here on our website and videos on our YouTube channel filled with whole food plant-based recipes and tips on how to cook without oil. It’s so much easier than most people think! We invite you to stick around for a while and dive deep into this essential component of taking control of your health, healing your body, and living your best life.
Until Next Time, Xoxo Reebs