Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Pru, it's kicking off!

Firstly, here's the video to go with the title...

As a nerd, I can be irritating. I often play Devil's Advocate when I read something that I think is unfair. So when I felt that Dr Harris was being unfair to Olive Oil, I just had to leave the following two-part comment (the second part was in reply to somebody else's comment).

My Aldi EVOO has a pufa content of only 6.6%. That's a lower percentage than lard (from grain-fed pigs). I use a "splash" (~10ml) for cooking (0.66g of pufas).
P.S. Can you please move "Log in" to the top. I keep forgetting where it is!
P.P.S. RE Ketogenic Diets for Epilepsy, Dementia etc: Branched chain amino acids (e.g. Whey protein) are a good adjunct. See Branched chain amino acids as adjunctive therapy to ketogenic diet in epilepsy: pilot study and hypothesis."

Dr Harris replied...

"Hi NIgel
I am not sure what your point is. I don't advocate lard either so why compare your EVOO to it?
Even if it is really "only" 7% it is unopposed linoleic acid and heavier in unsaturated MUFA than animal fats, which have more SFA. And of course Olive Oil CAN be much higher than this in n-6, up to 20%.
And why not compare it to pastured butter which is 2% n-6 and 2% n-3 in perfect balance, and is cheaper on a caloric basis?
Olive oil is still a TemPO in my world - more n-6 than necessary, no useful n-3 and not enough LCSFA.
But obviously you can eat whatever you want. It sounds like you are using it as a condiment anyway. My point is don't make a staple or cook with it and I stand by that."

Unfortunately, when I posted my above comment, it ended up in the wrong blog post due to the site freezing and me refreshing the page. I requested that my comment be moved, as the second part of it was in reply to a comment elsewhere. Request denied.

As I mentioned in my nerd post, body language = Double-Dutch. There was a subtle hint above. I completely missed it! I emailed Dr Harris.

My reply didn’t have a point – I just felt like mentioning that the EVOO that I buy isn’t particularly high in n-6. I always thought that OO was ~10% pufas. The reply was supposed to be to There is No Such Thing as a Macronutrient Part I – Fats as it contained a link about BCAAs enhancing ketosis. Your site froze and when I refreshed the page, I didn’t notice that the url in the address bar had changed.

Now that you have changed your views on ketosis, carbs etc, are you going to update some of your old blog posts?

Cheers, Nige."

The reply that I received was rather unexpected and can be seen HERE. What the **** just happened? I emailed back.

"Hi Kurt,

Don’t believe me, then. Delete my reply on your blog if it’s that annoying to you. I have my style and you have yours.

You obviously haven’t read my blog post about GCBC where I wrote that I agree with 99% of what Gary has written, but it’s the 1% that I disagree with that I’m arguing about because it means that calories do count.

Yes, I update my old blog posts with updated information when I learn new stuff. Blogs aren’t books.

There have been plenty of insults slung from the other side on Gary’s blog. If you think that my posts show a sneering disrespect for Gary then that’s your problem, not mine. I’m glad to have been of help in something.

Nigel Kinbrum"

As I respect Dr Harris, I am extending an Olive branch (Damn! Why does it have to be a freakin' Olive branch?). Unfortunately I don't drink beer, so I'll raise a virtual glass of Californian Red instead. Cheers!


praguestepchild said...

Nigel, don't mention the olive! I mentioned it once, but I think I got away with it . .

My own opinion is to only use olive oil that gets slushy in the fridge. Good olive oils are pretty pricey but we never cook with it so it lasts a good while.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

Oops, too late!

The amusing & possibly ironic thing about the whole affair is that one nerd has become irritated by another nerd's different style of nerdiness!

I want a cooking oil that's liquid at 20°C and stable at 100°C. Coconut oil melts at ~23°C, so I'd need to keep a pot of the stuff on top of the boiler in the kitchen.

Aldi's "Solesta" EVOO is inexpensive (£2.25/750ml) and low in pufas. I shall avoid posting any further comments on Kurt's blog, now that he's re-enabled them.

Galina L. said...

People often perceived differently than they think they are presenting themselves, especially nerds. Being married to a nerd, I observed countless times how my husband's innocent questions brought to a boiling point somebody who didn't know him and could misjudge my husband's intent. Sure, Dr. Harris has a personality of a fighter and not a lay-back gay.

praguestepchild said...

I'm extremely skeptical of olive oils, how do you know the PUFA content? I will stick with the fridge test.

I'm not usually into conspiracy theories and such, but I think most mainstream olive oils are crap. Why don't they get slushy in the fridge? Because of high PUFA? And why the high PUFA? Because they've been adulterated? I'll stick with the "real" stuff.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

The nutritional information is on the bottle. My Solesta EVOO & OO have some slush at 20°C, which suggests that they've been extracted from olives growing in a hot climate, which suggests that they are low in pufas. Aldi have some good quality products at very reasonable prices. I've read some bad things about Bertolli, so I won't touch that with a twenty foot pole.

If Kurt had said to check the nutritional information before buying, or check that the oil is slushy when cold, I wouldn't have felt the need to leave a comment.

praguestepchild said...

Aha, it never occurred to me to check the label. I just checked a bottle of Basso and it is supposedly 9% PUFA and 59% MFA. It didn't pass the fridge test. A bottle of Ballester 7% PUFA 79% MFA also didn't pass. Unfortunately, I don't have the nutrition label for my Italian EVOO that does pass the fridge test. I think it came with the box.

Given the level of corruption in these countries (Italy ranked 67 by Transparency Int'l) and the incentive to dilute with frankenoils I'm skeptical of the accuracy of these labels. Why does one EVOO grown in southern Italy get slushy and another one grown in a similar region not? It makes sense that the 'tropicalness' of the region could influence the SFA content, or perhaps the cultivar adapted to hotter climes? But who's in charge of monitoryin the accuracy of this nutrition info? The EU, blech, talk about corrupt. Naw, I'll stick to the fridge test and my nose on this one.

praguestepchild said...

And another thing that is so surprising is the dearth of information or awareness about the quality and possible adulteration of EVOOs. And this is coming from a guy who is a confirmed anti-conspiracist.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

It never occurred to me that the information on the label might be worthless due to corruption.

Aldi (and Lidl) are German (don't mention the war, Basil!) and their products are good quality. They got the highest ratings in the taste tests linked in my post.

Solesta has a spicy taste which I quite like - and it'll pass the fridge test. I don't keep EVOO in the fridge as it's in a dark bottle so it won't photo-oxidise.

EVOO also doesn't noticeably oxidise when it's exposed to air. I found a long-forgotten roasting tray at the top of the oven which had EVOO in it from the previous Christmas. The oil in it was about 6 months old. It still tasted O.K. Rancid oils taste bitter (e.g. Holland & Barrett's flaxseed oil).

Many years ago, I had a wok in which I used soya oil. Oil left in it turned to sticky varnish rather too quickly, so I got rid.

lightcan said...

Hi Nige,
I saw the OO that Aldi stocks and it looks a bit 'slushy', it looks like it has a sediment. I wanted to get some for my mom who lives in Romania to make her change to OO from Sunflower and because it's cheap, but logistically it's complicated. They only have EVOO there and it's very expensive. I don't know about your oils, yours and Sean's, but the olive oil that I use and put in the fridge on pesto for example always goes so slushy that you can spread it.
We always use butter and OO for cooking, EVOO for salads, but as a family, we rarely eat salads. I do but not in the winter. I read Matthew Fort in the Guardian and he says that he does the opposite, he likes mild OO in salads and cooks with EVOO for taste. He has a few info on smoking point in this week's one.
Yeah, I wish I had dripping to cook with, but it's impossible to find. However, I find it annoying that it goes hard so quickly, even on your spoon when you eat it.
I use ghee sometimes, but I don't know the origin of the milk.
I also have loads of goose fat rendered from the Christmas goose or duck meat that we cook, we don't seem to be able to eat it in a year.