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A Fat Lot of Good

Sheila Dillon looks into the latest science and thinking on which oils we should choose to cook with and how taste, health and environment all come into play.

The range of fats and oils available to us is growing but the advice has changed dramatically. Sheila Dillon looks to cut through the latest thinking to help gain clarity of which we should be using when.

She's joined in the studio by Dr Michael Mosley whose recent investigation looked into how the composition of saturated and polyunsaturated fats changed when heated with food and resulted in the production of dangerous aldehydes. Sheila finds out what response there has been since the programme and how he's changed his own cooking and buying habits but what questions should we be asking when we eat out?

Over the past decades animal fats have lost out in popularity and newer products like coconut oil have risen in prominence. Yet a butcher from Clonmel in Tipperary has seen his dripping crowned 'supreme champion' in the Great Taste awards - could this signify a change of thinking on what was once classed 'unhealthy fats'. Meanwhile in parts of Italy a new disease is threatening olive trees.

N.B. In this programme, mustard oil is used. Due to the high levels of the allergen erucic acid present in mustard oil, EU regulations state that the oil must be marked for 'external use only'. However, it continues to be widely used in Indian cooking and is often recommended by chefs to create authentic dishes.

Available now

30 minutes

Last on

Mon 2 Nov 2015 15:30

Find Out More

Trust Me I’m A Doctor – experiment with cooking oils here.

Hear the full Costing the Earth olive oil report.

Listen to the home butter-making process by Ella McSweeney,

...and here's Tim Hayward’s guide to making lard at home.


Role Contributor
Presenter Sheila Dillon
Interviewed Guest Michael Mosley


  • Sun 1 Nov 2015 12:32
  • Mon 2 Nov 2015 15:30

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