- With Mayo Clinic nutritionist
Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.read biographyclose window
Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.
As a specialty editor for the nutrition and healthy eating guide, Katherine Zeratsky helps you sort through the facts and figures, the fads and the hype to learn more about nutrition and diet.
A Marinette, Wis., native, Katherine is certified in dietetics by the state of Minnesota and the American Dietetic Association. She has been with Mayo Clinic since 1999.
She is active in nutrition-related curriculum and course development in wellness nutrition at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and nutrition education related to weight management and practical applications of nutrition-related lifestyle changes.
Other areas of interest include food and nutrition for all life stages, active lifestyles and the culinary arts.
She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, served a dietetic internship at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, and worked as a registered dietitian and health risk counselor at ThedaCare of Appleton, Wis., before joining the Mayo Clinic staff.
Nutrition basics (31)
- Water softeners: How much sodium do they add?
- Fat grams: How to track your dietary fat
- Yerba mate: Is it safe to drink?
- see all in Nutrition basics
Healthy diets (10)
- Canola oil: Does it contain toxins?
- Butter vs. margarine: Which is better for my heart?
- Detox diets: Do they work?
- see all in Healthy diets
Healthy cooking (7)
- When the heat is on, which oil should you use?
- Moldy cheese: Is it OK to eat?
- Food poisoning: How long can you safely keep leftovers?
- see all in Healthy cooking
Healthy menus and shopping strategies (8)
- What is BPA? Should I be worried about it?
- Brominated vegetable oil: Why is BVO in my drink?
- Sea salt vs. table salt: What's the difference?
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Nutritional supplements (18)
- Ground flaxseed: Better than whole?
- Fiber supplements: Safe to take every day?
- Chocolate: Does it impair calcium absorption?
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Canola oil: Does it contain toxins?
I've read that canola oil contains toxins. Is this true?
from Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.
Health concerns about canola oil are unfounded. Canola oil, which is extracted from the seeds of the canola plant, is generally recognized as safe by the Food and Drug Administration.
Misinformation about canola oil may stem from the fact that the canola plant was developed through crossbreeding with the rapeseed plant. Rapeseed oil contains very high levels of erucic acid, a compound that in large amounts can be toxic to humans. Canola oil, however, contains very low levels of erucic acid.
Canola oil is also low in saturated fat and has a high proportion of monounsaturated fat, which makes it a healthy and safe choice when it comes to cooking oils.Next question
Butter vs. margarine: Which is better for my heart?
- All about oils: Canola oil. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. http://www.eatright.org/public/slideshow.aspx?id=6442471506&terms=canola+oil#3. Accessed Dec. 11, 2012.
- Dupont J, et al. Food safety and health effects of canola oil. Journal of the American College of Nutrition. 1989;8:360.
- Agency Response Letter GRAS Notice No. GRN 000033. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/Food/FoodIngredientsPackaging/GenerallyRecognizedasSafeGRAS/GRASListings/ucm154145.htm. Accessed Dec. 11, 2012.