Lard Is Making A Comeback For All The Right Reasons!
by Jane Chitty
Obviously not for vegetarians, vegans or non-pork eaters, this old fashioned animal fat (known as lard) is coming back into favor. Pasture-raised lard is heat stable, heart healthy and high in Vitamin D. It was once a staple in our grandparents’ homes but has been largely absent for over fifty years. Now many are beginning to take note of its health benefits.
Why is lard making a comeback?
It is a good cooking oil because of its heat stability. The high amount of saturated fat in lard helps to protect the other fats from breaking down and oxidizing. When fats break down, they create free radicals, which cause cell damage. Lard is solid at room temperature which is why it makes an ideal cooking fat. Along with coconut oil, butter and even olive oil, lard produces a substantially less amount of aldehydes. Saturated fats are great for brain and immune system health while animal foods in general are high in vitamins.
It is said to be heart-healthy. The saturated fat in lard increases HDL cholesterol which is actually linked to a lower risk of heat disease while the cholesterol also aids the body in inflammation management and hormone production. Researchers from the Framington Hill Study found that those who ate the most cholesterol, ate the most saturated fat, ate the most calories, weighed the least and were the most physically active.
Lard has a neutral flavor so that it can be used in anything in place of vegetable oil.
Interestingly, it is high in vitamin D. With cod liver oil ranking first place, lard is second with 1000 IUs of vitamin D in a tablespoon of lard.
Sustainable when derived from pasture-raised pigs. In fact, the lard sold at most supermarkets contain hydrogenized oils and should be avoided. Look instead for pasture-raised pork lard from a health food store, good grocery store or your local farmers market. It is usually to be found in a jar on a shelf in the baking aisle or online.
Just in case you want to use lard in pastry!
Here is pastry recipe handed down from generation to generation... Ingredients:
Jane writes for Healing Natural Oils, a producer and retailer of high-quality, all-natural treatments for a variety of conditions as well as a range of beauty products. Apart from writing about those various conditions, she also covers general health, environmental and other subjects of interest. She has lived in Kenya as well as Cape Town, South Africa and spent time in San Diego, USA. She now lives in Somerset, England with regular visits from her far-flung children and grandchildren. She is a keen gardener and enjoys growing fresh fruit and vegetables with her husband on their joint allotment. As a result, there is something available to use in the kitchen virtually all year round. Her regular posts can be found on our blog.