Thursday, April 30, 2015

Cooking Spray

Olive oil has 120 calories per tablespoon.  You can find that information on the Nutritional Facts on the label of the oil in your pantry.  While you are there, pick up your can of non-stick cooking spray. Mine says "Olive Oil No-Stick Cooking Spray" (Hill Country Fare). In the upper right hand corner it also says "For Fat Free Cooking". I have wondered how that could be fully aware that olive oil is  fully fat. When I looked a little closer, the ingredient label list olive oil as the first ingredient and still it's fat free. Marion Nestle in her book, WHAT TO EAT, clears up the mystery.  She writes that by further examination of the Nutrition Facts you will notice that the serving size of cooking spray is 1/4 second. (No typo.) In my can, there are 470 servings.   Now I don't know if the 1/4 second starts when the nozzle is pressed or when the cooking spray actually appears, but 1/4 second is not a lot of time to debate.  In reality a 1/4 second spray also sprays 1/4 grams of fat.  In the FDA's way of governing nutrition labels, anything below half a gram does not have to listed. Therefore the label can say zero fat. We educated people are all thinking that a one second spray will be zero fat because after all 4 X 0 is still 0.  Not so fast with the fancy math. Holding that nozzle for a full second will give a full gram of fat and 9 calories.  Considering that, I have recipes instructing me to spray my pans twice. Holy cow!! I'll just use my olive oil Mistro. If you really want to know more about the food you eat, read the book.

Resource: WHAT TO EAT by Marion Nestle