DOH warns against hazards of reusing cooking oil

MANILA — The Department of Health (DOH) has warned anew on the potential health risks of using “over-used” cooking oil or those that were he-heated for several times and has turned dark in appearance.

DOH spokesperson Dr. Eric Tayag said that aside from the potential health risks it may cause, it also affects the taste of the food.

Used cooking oil can also lead to faster contamination of food because the prolong used also makes it a medium for growth of bacteria that causes food spoilage.

Aside from that constant reheating of the used oil, it can also lead to the release of chemical substances that are harmful to the body especially if it reaches the point wherein it is already dark.

“Pwede kayo magka-cancer dahil patuloy na iniinit yung mantika,” Tayag added.

According to DOH, cooking oil when used several times produces changes in its by products which can later affect the other foods cooked through it.

Presently, there is a pending bill (House Bill 814 or the Anti-Used Cooking Oil Act) — filed by Ako Bicol Party-list Representatives Rodel Batocabe, Alfredo Garbin, and Christopher Co in the House of Representatives — that seeks to ban the sale and retail of used cooking oil, citing health risks for consumers.

Tayag said that if said bill is passed into law, the challenge will actually be on the enforcement side because sometimes the manner of cooking is usually not being exposed to the public, meaning to say, it can done secretly.

Meanwhile, Tayag said that reusing cooking oil will not actually be that bad as long as those using them knows when to re-use them or not.

“Ang cooking oil pwede mo naman gamitin yun ng ilang beses, halimbawa, may pinaglutuan o pinagprituhan ka sayang naman kung itapon. Ang masama eh itim na itim na ang cooking oil sunog pa ang pagkakaluto,” the Health official said. Leilani Junio/