A simple change in your cooking oils could help you feel healthier and support the environment. Exercise physiologist and best-selling author Dr. Felicia Stoler visited the Marybeth Conley Show to inspire her Memphis-based audience to make healthy changes this summer. The two discussed red palm fruit oil’s health benefits and why Stoler prefers getting hers from Malaysia.
“I had the opportunity last year to go there to speak at a conference,” Stoler began. “I got to actually travel to the other side of the country and go and be immersed in their palm oil process and see where palm oil is made and what they’re doing that’s good and sustainable for the environment. And [they’re] creating jobs, really good jobs. And being good to the animals and the wildlife there, while producing a high-quality [product].” While some countries have faced scrutiny for not responsibly producing palm fruit oil, Malaysia adheres to strict government regulations regarding deforestation (which is illegal) and sources most of its oil production from small, local farms.
Stoler discussed the numerous antioxidants and nutrients found in Malaysian red palm fruit oil: lycopene, CoQ10, beta carotene and tocotrienols. A form of vitamin E found most abundantly in palm oil, tocotrienols may be beneficial for brain health by possibly protecting it from stroke damage, as well as supporting the health of the brain’s white matter.
“The NIH [National Institutes of Health] is right now currently funding more research here in the U.S. looking at tocotrienols in brain health, post-stroke. They’ve looked at new growth that has occurred in terms of damaged nerve endings,” Stoler said. Malaysian palm fruit oil can be found at Whole Foods and ethnic markets, and Stoler hopes that it will soon be available at more grocery stores. Just remember to check the label to ensure that you’re getting responsibly produced palm oil from Malaysia.
Palm fruit oil is the “most popular oil in the world next to olive oil.” If you’ve never cooked with it Stoler had several recommendations: “It has a completely neutral flavor profile so you can use it in place of butter … sometimes you need something with a particular flavor and sometimes you don’t want any flavor. I mean, you’re not going to put olive oil in a cake mix … What I also like about it is that it has a high smoke point so you can grill with it. So the food doesn’t taste rancid because sometimes people don’t realize that certain oils will impact the taste of your foods.” Malaysian palm fruit oil can also be used instead of mayonnaise in summertime favorites: pasta and potato salads.
Additional recipe ideas can be found in the Back to Basics cookbook, which is available on Amazon. The perfect gift for any foodie, each purchase directly supports the Malaysian Palm Oil Council’s Wildlife Conservation Fund.
Felicia Stoler is a member of Media Relations Inc.’s panel of highly respected third-party experts. She is compensated to express her own professional opinions, through the media, about certain products.