The Dangers of Canola Oil

The Dangers of Canola Oil

Unless you’re a raw vegan, whipping up your favorite dishes almost always involves oil. That pale, thick liquid is as diverse and versatile as the foods you pair it with. You fry with oil, you sauté with oil, you bake with oil, you roast with oil, you marinate with oil, and in some cases, you massage oil into your salads to humble those harsh greens and soften them before digestion. And when you’re not manually mixing this ingredient into your kitchen concoctions, rest assured that your favorite restaurants and food companies are doing it for you.

Oil. Is. Everywhere.

This reality demands an honest conversation about the nature of oil—canola oil, specifically—and its impact on our health. As this ingredient finds home in your mayonnaise jar and salad dressing, ask yourself: what do you know about canola oil?

Allow me to share a few things:

  1. Pick up the nearest bottle of canola oil and study its packaging. You’ll read words like “heart-healthy,” “anti-inflammatory,” and “high in omega-3”—words that conjure images of Future You, a gracefully aging (wo)man with washboard abs and glowing skin as you chase after your one-day-perhaps grandchildren. Ah, life is good with canola oil. Except…
  2. Except it’s not, because canola oil isn’t as wholesome as its labels suggest. Unlike olive oil or coconut oil, canola oil bears no origin from anything in nature; there is no canola plant or canola seed from which this oil began. Rather, it’s a manmade liquid hatched from hybridized, genetically-modified rapeseed plants, containing more trans fatty acids than its harmful counterparts, i.e. soy, corn, and vegetable oil.

Yet canola oil remains a celebrated companion to restaurant cooks all over America. Having swapped genetically-modified soybean oil for canola, these restaurants claim that their menu items are trans-fat-free. Before we swallow that statement, let’s scrutinize the case with some facts: canola oil goes through extensive chemical processing before being bottled up and shipped to your favorite restaurant. Food scientists hydrogenate and deodorize this liquid, granting it longer shelf life and an increased smoking point (so that it can withstand high-heat cooking), which consequently boosts its trans-fat content by 40 percent.

“Forty percent,” you ask, “is that bad?” Anything more than zero percent is plenty. The health risks for consuming trans-fat canola oil are many, and here at Enaya, we won’t mince the facts for profit. Brace yourselves for the full scoop on this common yet toxic liquid.

FIRST: Canola oil damages your lipid profile and can raise your triglycerides (body fat) by 47 percent.

SECOND: As we hydrate with brand moisturizers and lemon water, our canola oil consumption works to undo our efforts by aging our skin—and the body as a whole—by damaging our cell membranes. Skip the fifty dollar Estee Lauder cream and invest in some quality cooking oil instead. Your skin will thank you for it.

THIRD: Canola oil depletes the vitamin E levels in our bodies. Vitamin E, in case you’re wondering, is a major antioxidant, and its deficiency can trigger a wide array of illnesses (heart disease, Alzheimer’s, various cancers, diabetes, amongst many other conditions).

Being food-smart, label-savvy, and selective about your grocery list and restaurant outings isn’t enough to cut your canola oil consumption. Unfortunately, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has loose regulations for food manufacturers; they allow a NO TRANS FAT label for anything with less than 500 mg of trans-fat per ½ cup serving. So how can you stock your pantry and meal plan confidently, knowing that labels aren’t always in your favor? For starters, here’s a list of healthy oils and their cooking purposes to begin incorporating into your kitchen today:

HIGH HEAT COOKING: ghee, butter, duck fat, or avocado oil


LOW HEAT COOKING or sautéing: olive oil (this oil has a very low smoking point. It turns into a harmful compound and loses all of its healing properties when heated on high temperatures)

DRIZZLING: extra virgin olive oil, sesame seed oil, hemp seed oil, or walnut oil

Conscious cooking doesn’t need to occupy your entire afternoon, and it certainly doesn’t need to occupy most of your financial budget. With small swaps here and there, you can enjoy dinner without the company of inflammatory, trans-fat-laden canola oil. Small swaps for large gains. Now that’s a deal worth bragging about.

What You Need to Know about Organic vs. Conventional Produce

What You Need to Know about Organic vs. Conventional Produce

Walking down the produce aisle at your local grocery store, you have a thought: maybe I should shop organic today. It is healthier, after all.

As you bag a stalk of organic broccoli, you catch a number blaring at you from the shelf below. Whoa. You lower your hand and recoil in hesitation. The price is much higher than you anticipated. On second thought… and just like that, you’re back in the congested yet familiar aisles of conventional produce and smaller prices, because you decided that you have many hungry bellies to fill and a finite supply of money and health is just too darn expensive.

Does that scenario sound familiar?

Let’s be honest, it is all too common for Americans to opt for conventional (read: inorganic) produce when their organic counterparts are a few bucks extra (especially with a tight wallet and an expanding family). This begs the question: are organic foods inherently healthier, so much so that they are worth the extra dollar? Before we explore the benefits of organic, let us virtually tour a conventional farm to how understand how inorganic produce is grown.

It begins just after the farmer buries the seeds in the soil. As the little plants grow, the farmer needs to ensure their survival from insects and animals nearby. So he slips into his protective gear—a white suit, gloves, and a face mask so thick, it resembles something like a hazmat suit from Stranger Things—and ventures out to spray several pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, and other powerful chemicals onto the plants. The farmer then harvests these crops and sends them off for your consumption. (This is when you enter the scene). After returning that organic stalk of broccoli to its shelf, you pick up its conventional counterpart and cook it that night for dinner, not realizing that broccoli isn’t the only thing your body will ingest. Those harmful chemicals, too, are part of your dinner menu.

Here are three facts to keep in mind during your next grocery trip:

  1. Studies have shown that organic farming and organic food production can boost key nutrients in foods. In fact, organic food has double the nutritional value of conventionally grown food.
  2. Another collection of studies examined the effects of organophosphate pesticides on children. Their results indicated that children with high levels of this pesticide are found with double the cases of ADHD than those with lower levels.
  3. The World Health Organization (WHO) recently declared the world’s most widely used herbicide, glyphosate (also the main ingredient in Round Up), as carcinogenic (cancer-causing) to humans.

For the non-vegans reading this, know that the pitfalls of conventional farming also extend to animal agricultural. Those very animals that provide you your inorganic meat, dairy, and eggs are treated inhumanely in commercial farms, and the ills from their existence trickle into your own wellbeing. Picture this: commercially-farmed cows are injected with antibiotics, growth hormones, and disease-preventing medication while sentenced to immobility in confined barns. They do not graze in green pastures, as their biological nature demands; rather, green grass is traded for genetically-modified corn, which not only causes disease in cows, but also renders their meat and dairy to be disease-causing and nutrient-deficient. And to maximize human consumption of their milk, these commercial cows are separated from their newborn calves immediately after birth. Only a cow’s psychological distress can result from this early separation.

Unfortunately, commercial eggs aren’t any different. Most commercial eggs come from hens fed an unnatural diet of soy and corn, and when we consume these eggs, we are also consuming their pro-inflammatory and nutrient-deficient properties.

What if I can’t afford organic foods?

Big families and tight budgets are a legitimate reason to abandon the fantasy of an all-organic fridge, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try! Some produce items are worth the extra buck—namely the thin-skinned ones—because they absorb heavy amounts of toxic chemicals and pesticides. Avoiding them altogether would do better for your health than consuming them in their conventional form. Many websites coin these “The Dirty Dozen Foods,” and though the list changes annually, the top culprits usually include: strawberries, spinach, nectarines, apples, peaches, pears, cherries, grapes, celery, tomatoes, sweet bell pepper, and potatoes.

And if organic prices remain a hindrance, purchase more thick-skinned conventional produce, as well as produce with easy-to-peel skin, to limit your chemical consumption. Bananas, avocados, and pineapples are great go-to options! There is also a no-charge kitchen hack to buffer your contact with pesticides and herbicides: simply wash your produce using a ten percent salt solution. In a bowl, mix nine parts water and one part salt and let your produce party in there for a good ten minutes. Use that break to read more of our blog posts (for more free health hacks!), and when you return, rinse the produce with plain water before consumption.

Shaving bucks from your grocery bills can be tempting—we’ve all been there. But pause for a moment and recalibrate your perspective: preventative lifestyle changes are an investment toward long-term health. And that long-term health may translate to fewer medical bills in the future; to better moods and energy levels; to little need for over-the-counter pills and buckets of supplements lined up by your nightstand. A few bucks might seem like a lot now. Just know, an ounce of prevention is always better than a pound of cure.

Pain Buster Smoothie

Pain Buster Smoothie

Are you suffering from aches and pain or have a slower recovery time after workouts? Try this powerful anti inflammatory smoothie that tastes incredible! This delicious smoothie is full of antioxidants which will curb your pain and expedite the recovery time after workouts. Enjoy this pain buster smoothie after a workout session, for breakfast, or any other time of the day. Bonus – it will keep you full for long!


  • 1 cup greens of your choice (spinach, kale, chard)

  • 1 cup mixed fruits (Mango, pineapple, strawberries, and peach)

  • 2 tbsp shredded coconut

  • ½ Avocado

  • ½ inch small piece of ginger

  • 1 tbsp chia seeds

  • 1 tsp black seeds

  • ½ tsp turmeric

  • ¼ tsp black pepper

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk


Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until mixture is smooth. Enjoy! Let us know if you have any questions or feedback in the comments and be sure to share this recipe with your friends and family!

Photos courtesy of Makeen Osman Photography

Detox Smoothie

Detox Smoothie

Are you preparing for a wedding, or have a vacation coming up? Try this smoothie to look lighter and brighter. Detox smoothies are an easy and delicious way to flush your body of toxins and help lose weight fast. Drink this delicious and nutritious smoothie when you are feeling bloated for just need a natural detox cleanse.


  • 1 cup Spring mix
  • 2 pitted dates
  • 1 green apple
  • 1 semi raw banana
  • ½ cup unbunched cilantro
  • 1 tsp spirulina
  • 2 tbsp Aloe Vera gel or ½ cup aloe vera juice
  • 1 cup water


Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until mixture is smooth. Enjoy! Let us know if you have any questions or feedback in the comments and be sure to share this recipe with your friends and family!

Photos courtesy of Makeen Osman Photography

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