Saturday, March 4, 2006

I know, I'm crazy...

My old roommates used to make fun of me for not cooking with teflon pans, and since I was the only one who had pans (which happened to be stainless steel, not coated in any way at all) they would use mine all the time... and use plastic spatulas on them which would be useless, since plastic spatualas are really only effective on teflon coated pans...

anyway, here's an article that Frik showed me about teflon. The way I see it... sure, if you cook with teflon, you don't have to use oil... but not all oil is bad oil, which some people don't seem to understand. Yeah, you don't necessarly want to saturate everything you eat with butter and lard, but some oils (olive oil and canola oil are two) will lower your cholesterol (They actually increase your HDL and lower your LDL, and that's a good thing)

Ok, that's all starting to get very confusing. This is the breakdown that I learned from my biology class:

LDL (low density lipoprotiens) and HDL (high density Lipoprotiens) are the 2 different kinds of cholesterol in the blood stream. If I remember correctly, HDL is responsible for bringing bad things to the liver, and LDL brings them back into the bloodstream. That might not be true, but either way, I know that the HDL is good for you, and LDL is bad for you.

omega 3 fatty acids (which are in fish and I think walnuts) will increase your HDL and lower your LDL... like a double bonus...

monounsaturated fatty acids (which are in olive oil and I think canola oil) will increase your HDL, and leave your LDL unchanged.

polyunsaturated fats, which are in other oils... vegetable oils... will increase your HDL, but can also increase your LDL

Saturated fats, which are found in butter and meat products, will increase your LDL, but leave your HDL the same.

Trans-fats, which are created by hydrogenating oils, and are found in things like vegetable shortening and pre-packaged, highly preserved foods, will increase your LDL, and decrease your HDL (so it's a double negative).

Ok, So i could be totally butchering that, but that's the order of good oils to bad oils: omega 3 fatty acids, monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, saturated, transfats. Oh, get this: trans fats are created by hydrogenation, right? ok, I think this is the sickest thing... but hydrogenation is a process where thy pump hydrogen into the oils and make bonds which make the oil firm. The purpose of this is to make packaged foods "creamy", and also makes them last longer (think twinkies with their amazing shelf life and cream fillings... mmm.....)

Anyway... where in the world was I going with all of that? Oh yes. Not all oils or fats are bad. Some are very good, in fact. especially if you are trying to lower your cholesterol. Some people will eat foods with the hydrogenated oils in them because they have less fat overall (cool whip vs. whipped cream) but they could be much worse for your heart.

This all relates to my teflon pan rant. trust me. :o)

So, since not all oil is bad, it's ok to not use teflon pans. In fact... If you think about it, you are gradually eating your pans over time. Really old pans will have dips in them or the teflon will be worn thin or scratched or whatever... and where do you think that is all going?? That's why I like to cook with cast iron... b/c it keeps me from being anemic! (oh, and I don't use Aluminum either, b/c it's been linked to alzheimers...not a causal link, but a link none the less...)

I bet you all didn't know I was so obsessed with how I cook, did you? Just trust that if you ever eat something I prepared, you will be pretty safe from ingesting carcinogens. :o)


  1. Oh, ps... the aluminum zirconium in anti-perspirants is also supposedly not good for you with regards to breast cancer and alzheimers... although I guess the evidence has yet to be shown that proves one way or another, but until it does prove that antiperspirants are 100% safe, I use deodorants without the aluminum zirconium. :o)

  2. You and Antigone should talk more - she's just as obsessed. :D

  3. they are also looking at alzheimers as another form of diabetes!
    I have a book called the omega diet. it talks alot about the omega 3s. (whoda thunk)
    reading about all of that and putting your knowledge of it to use is a good thing.(y)

  4. Actually, it doesn't surprise me that you're so obsessed with how you cook. After moving back home for a little while, I discovered that I'm the only member of the family who isn't obsessed with that. :)

  5. anonymous....? Canoe?

  6. we cook with stainless steel (Scott's preferance, i could care less.) but maybe we should start using cast iron as my iron pills (prescribed!) make me sick (very!!) and I need iron... but how often do I use a skillet anyway?

  7. I got here and realized I don'tknow how to cook on anything that isn't cast iron so I had to go to the store and buy new pans for myself.

  8. You can also bake on terra cotta (at least I think that's what I'm thinking of). Mostly just breads, but it works.