Ghee has been a bone of contention among desi households since the turn of the century, despite it being a staple in our diets for generations. While elders rally for its benefits, the younger generation has been divided on its use.
For years people have wondered whether ghee is as nutritious as it has been long believed to be, with many arguing that the fatty nature of ghee makes it almost toxic for use. With people becoming more health-conscious and turning to healthier alternatives, research into ghee’s properties has also ramped up.
Here are five myths about desi ghee, as compiled from Femina, that Shikha Mahajan, a certified nutritionist, has busted down.
Myth 1: Desi ghee is bad for overall health
Surprisingly, this one is far from reality! A common misconception is that ghee is loaded with fats, which is true to some extent… a large portion of it is made up of monosaturated fatty acids, which are often labeled as “good” dietary fat.
Of course, excess of everything is bad for health, and in the same way, if consumed carefully, ghee can actually be beneficial for you. In fact, studies have confirmed that ghee can even be a source of curbing cancerous cells!
It can help decrease enzyme activity that triggers carcinogens in our liver, thereby helping our body detoxify carcinogens, reducing the chances of further cancerous growths.
Myth 2: Lactose intolerants should not consume ghee
This is also a widely believed myth that’s rooted in suspicion and nothing more. There are practically no milk solids present in ghee, which means it cannot possibly trigger any lactase-deficiency-related symptoms and is, thereby, safe to consume for lactose-intolerant people.
Myth 3: Ghee causes weight gain
Ghee has long been associated with weight gain, especially in South Asia, where many even casually joke about consuming too much ghee if one has to gain weight. However, this is also untrue on several grounds.
Surprisingly, the conjugated linolic acid found in desi ghee can actually help in weight loss! Not just that, but it also promotes better gut health by preventing plaque formation in your digestive system – this also means better metabolism!
By no means does this mean that you start loading up in ghee-laden food, but a spoon of desi ghee in your daal or on your roti can actually help you stay fit.
Myth 4: Cooking in desi ghee is hazardous
The toxicity of cooking oils depends on high their smoke point is, which determines the temperate at which the oil turns to free radicals. Desi ghee actually has a higher smoke point as compared to many other oils and with a smoke point of 250° Celsius, it is in fact considered a safer option than many others, including canola oil, corn oil, and olive oil.
Myth 5: Ghee can cause heart attacks
This is perhaps the biggest fear associated with ghee and its use, with many phasing out ghee for fear of heart ailments. However, according to Mahajan’s learning, desi ghee is actually loaded with antioxidants, conjugated linoleic acid, and fat-soluble vitamins like vitamins A, D, and E which can actually help in preventing harmful deposits in the arteries.
This in turn lessens the risk of heart diseases! So, if consumed in moderation, ghee can actually help you.
There you have it! There is no reason to completely ditch desi ghee, provided that you do not go overboard with its use.