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I used to cook with olive oil or canola oil, both heart healthy fats that may help protect us from heart disease (canola oil even has omega-3s, an added benefit). However, there has been an on going controversy about heating oils and that they may actually become carcinogenic (cancer promoting) when heated above a certain temperature (about 275 degrees). So I started to lessen the amount of oil I used and added some low sodium chicken broth for flavor and to prevent my veggies and lean protein from sticking to and ruining my pans. The flavor was great and I didn’t mind lowering the fat and calories of all my dishes by lessening the amount of oil I used (all oils come in at about 120 calories and 14 grams of fat per tablespoon, so although good for you, best when used in smaller amounts.). This was working for me until I attended a recent lecture and got a new idea from it. One of the well known vegan chefs (sorry guys but his name escapes me), uses Coconut Water to saute and cook with (popular brands include Vita Coco, Zico and O.N.E found at most food stores)! Sure I’ve had it at a beverage after a tough workout and my husband and son love it too but I NEVER thought to cook with it. So as you can imagine at my very next meal I subbed in coconut water for my oil/chicken broth mixture and WOW, it was delicious! It added a mildly sweet flavor that balances out beautifully with a touch of sea salt, pepper, garlic powder and hot sauce (or red pepper flakes), my go to concoction when throwing together a quick bite. And to top it all of you get a dose of electrolytes, that keeps your body hydrated, in balance and chock full of potassium. So should you get rid of your oil altogether? NO WAY, just drizzle it on towards the end of cooking or after cooking so you can enjoy all it’s flavor and pure health benefits, in a smaller portion too!