Food fried in olive or sunflower oil is not linked to heart disease

January 24, 2012

Eating food fried in olive or sunflower oil is not linked to heart disease or premature death, finds a paper published in the British Medical Journal today.

The authors stress, however, that their study took place in Spain, a Mediterranean country where olive or sunflower oil is used for frying and their results would probably not be the same in another country where solid and re-used oils were used for frying.

In , frying is one of the most common methods of cooking. When food is fried it becomes more calorific because the food absorbs the fat of the oils.

While eating lots of can increase some factors such as , and obesity, a link between fried food and heart disease has not been fully investigated.

So the authors, led by Professor Pilar Guallar-Castillón from Autonomous University of Madrid, surveyed the cooking methods of 40,757 adults aged 29 to 69 over an 11-year period. None of the participants had heart disease when the study began.

Trained interviewers asked participants about their diet and cooking methods. Fried food was defined as food for which frying was the only cooking method used. Questions were also asked about whether food was fried, battered, crumbed or sautéed.

The participants' diet was divided into ranges of fried food consumption, the first quartile related to the lowest amount of fried food consumed and the fourth indicated the highest amount.

During the follow-up there were 606 events linked to heart disease and 1,134 deaths.

The authors conclude: "In a Mediterranean country where olive and sunflower oils are the most commonly used fats for frying, and where large amounts of fried foods are consumed both at and away from home, no association was observed between fried food consumption and the risk of coronary heart disease or death."

In an accompanying editorial, Professor Michael Leitzmann from the University of Regensburg in Germany, says the study explodes the myth that "frying food is generally bad for the heart" but stresses that this "does not mean that frequent meals of fish and chips will have no health consequences." He adds that specific aspects of frying food are relevant, such as the type of oil used.

Explore further: Heart failure risk lower in women who often eat baked/broiled fish

Related Stories

Heart failure risk lower in women who often eat baked/broiled fish

May 24, 2011
The risk of developing heart failure was lower for postmenopausal women who frequently ate baked or broiled fish, but higher for those who ate more fried fish, in a study reported in Circulation: Heart Failure, an American ...

Diet high in vegetables and fruit associated with less weight gain in African-American women

May 20, 2011
Investigators from the Slone Epidemiology Center at Boston University have reported that African American women who consumed a diet high in vegetables and fruit gained less weight over a 14-year period than those who consumed ...

Recommended for you

Amber-tinted glasses may provide relief for insomnia

December 15, 2017
How do you unwind before bedtime? If your answer involves Facebook and Netflix, you are actively reducing your chance of a good night's sleep. And you are not alone: 90 percent of Americans use light-emitting electronic devices, ...

Warning labels can help reduce soda consumption and obesity, new study suggests

December 15, 2017
Labels that warn people about the risks of drinking soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages can lower obesity and overweight prevalence, suggests a new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health study.

Office work can be a pain in the neck

December 15, 2017
Neck pain is a common condition among office workers, but regular workplace exercises can prevent and reduce it, a University of Queensland study has found.

Regular takeaways linked to kids' heart disease and diabetes risk factors

December 14, 2017
Kids who regularly eat take-away meals may be boosting their risk factors for heart disease and diabetes, suggests research published online in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.

Simulation model finds Cure Violence program and targeted policing curb urban violence

December 14, 2017
When communities and police work together to deter urban violence, they can achieve better outcomes with fewer resources than when each works in isolation, a simulation model created by researchers at the UC Davis Violence ...

One in five patients report discrimination in health care

December 14, 2017
Almost one in five older patients with a chronic disease reported experiencing health care discrimination of one type or another in a large national survey that asked about their daily experiences of discrimination between ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.