Washington D.C: Olive oil has certain health benefits and using it in vinaigrettes, emulsions and baked goods, drizzled on or dipped into, adds an extra layer of flavor and moisture when needed, but now a new study reveals it provides same benefits from stove top cooking, in high temperature methods such as frying and sauteing.
Researchers from the University of Granada (UGR) reveals that vegetables fried in Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) have more beneficial properties than their boiled counterparts.
They have proven that frying in EVOO is the cooking method that increases the phenolic fraction present in raw vegetables used in Mediterranean diet (potato, pumpkin, tomato and eggplant) the most. This means an improvement to these foods in the cooking process.
The team has also proven that vegetables fried in EVOO improved their antioxidant capacity and the amount of phenolic compounds, which prevent chronic degenerative pathologies such as cancer, diabetes or macular degeneration.
The results showed that using EVOO for frying vegetables increases their fat content and reduces their moisture, while this is not observed in other cooking methods.
Oil as a mean of heat transfer increases the amount of phenolic compounds in vegetables, opposite to other cooking methods such as boiling, where heat transfer is done through the water, explains one of the authors Cristina Samaniego Sanchez. The study appears in Food Chemistry.