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Avocado oil vs Vegetable oil - What's The Difference?

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Article author photo Victoria Mazmanyan by Victoria Mazmanyan | Last updated on June 20, 2023
Medically reviewed by Igor Bussel Article author photo Igor Bussel
Vegetable oil
vs
Avocado oil

Summary

Avocado oil is a type of vegetable oil. Compared to a mix of other vegetable oils, avocado oil provides the same amount of calories and fats but is lower in saturated fats and higher in unsaturated fats.

A mix of vegetable oils, including corn, peanut, and olive oil, is higher in vitamin E, vitamin K, and minerals compared to avocado oil.

Avocado oil has heart-healthy properties similar to olive oil and can be a more beneficial choice when compared to other vegetable oils.

Refined avocado oil has a high smoke point and can be an excellent option to use at high temperatures, such as frying.

Introduction

There are dozens of cooking oils in the kitchen, but which is better in nutrition and health impact? In this article, we will look at how avocado oil compares with a mixture of other vegetable oils.

Classification

Vegetable oil is extracted from plants and fruits, usually their seeds. In this sense, avocado oil is a type of vegetable oil.

The most common varieties of vegetable oils are sunflower, olive, peanut, safflower, and corn oils. Avocado is relatively less popular; however, no less valuable.

As a product on the shelves, “vegetable oil” is usually a mix of a few of these oils.

Smoke Point, Taste, and Use

The smoke point of oils is an important characteristic to remember when cooking. The smoke point is the temperature at which the oil starts to break down and smoke or burn. Oils with high smoke points are better to use at high temperatures, while oils with low smoke points are preferably used raw as dressings in different dishes.

Refined avocado oil has a very high smoke point of around 520°F or 271°C. Refined vegetable oils tend to have slightly lower smoke points.

Unrefined avocado oil, at the same time, has a lower smoke point of about 375°F or 190°C. Unrefined vegetable oils can have smoke points ranging from 350°F (177°C) to 450°F (232°C), depending on the variety.

In other words, refined oils, especially refined avocado oil, are good to use for frying at high temperatures, while unrefined oils, both avocado and other vegetable oils, are better to use as salad dressings.

However, it is essential to note that unrefined oils with low smoke points have shorter shelf lives.

Can avocado oil be substituted for vegetable oil?

Avocado oil is a type of vegetable oil; it can be a healthy alternative to vegetable oil. It is unrefined, high in healthy fats, and has a higher smoke point, making it ideal for frying. It also has a mild flavor so that you won't notice the difference.

The two oils are very similar in taste, especially in their refined forms. Unrefined oils tend to contain more of the original flavor of the seed they're made from.

Avocado and vegetable oils are nearly impossible to tell apart by appearance as both are odorless, yellow liquids at room temperature.

Nutrition

The nutritional information below will be discussed for avocado oil and a mix of corn, peanut, and olive oil as a representative of vegetable oil.

Macronutrients and Calories

One serving size of vegetable or avocado oil is one tablespoon equal to 14g of vegetable oil. One teaspoon of vegetable oil weighs 4.5g.

The macronutrient content of oils consists of 100% fats, containing no other macronutrients.

Calories

Vegetable oils can add a lot of calories to a meal. Avocado and vegetable oils are equal in calorie content, providing 124 calories per one tbsp.

Fats

As mentioned above, 100% of the macronutrient content of vegetable oils is made up of fats.

Avocado and vegetable oil have the same 14g of fats per serving but differ in fat composition.

Avocado oil comprises 12% saturated, 74% monounsaturated, and 14% polyunsaturated fats. Conversely, vegetable oil comprises 15% saturated, 50% monounsaturated, and 35% polyunsaturated fats.

This is presented in the infographic below.

Fat Type Comparison

Fat type breakdown side-by-side comparison
Contains more Polyunsaturated fat +144.9%
Contains less Saturated Fat -19.5%
Contains more Monounsaturated Fat +46.9%
15% 50% 35%
Saturated Fat: 14.367 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 48.033 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 33.033 g
12% 74% 14%
Saturated Fat: 11.56 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 70.554 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 13.486 g
Contains more Polyunsaturated fat +144.9%
Contains less Saturated Fat -19.5%
Contains more Monounsaturated Fat +46.9%

As we can see, avocado oil is lower in saturated and polyunsaturated fats but considerably higher in monounsaturated fats.

Avocado and vegetable oil naturally do not contain cholesterol.

Carbohydrates and Protein

Avocado oil and vegetable oil are absent in both protein and carbohydrates.

Vitamins

The mix of vegetable oils is rich in the fat-soluble vitamins E and K, whereas avocado oil provides no vitamins.

Vitamin Comparison

Vitamin comparison score is based on the number of vitamins by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" charts below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food.
:
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Choline Vitamin K 0% 296% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 1% 53%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Choline Vitamin K 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%

Minerals

Vegetable oils are not significant sources of minerals. However, avocado oil contains no minerals, while the mix of vegetable oils provides some amounts of zinc and iron.

Mineral Comparison

Mineral comparison score is based on the number of minerals by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" charts below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food.
Contains more Iron +∞%
Contains more Zinc +∞%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper Manganese Selenium 0% 5% 0% 0% 0% 0% 1% 0% 0% 0%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper Manganese Selenium 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Contains more Iron +∞%
Contains more Zinc +∞%

Glycemic Index

The glycemic index of foods with no carbohydrates is considered to be 0.

Insulin Index

The insulin index is essential for foods with no carbohydrates, as it shows how much the given food increases the insulin levels in the blood after consumption.

Vegetable oils, including avocado oil, have a shallow insulin index of about 3 (1).

Health Impact

Cardiovascular Health

Replacing saturated fats with polyunsaturated or monounsaturated fats was researched to lead to a decreased risk of heart disease (2). This shows that avocado oil may be the better choice for cardiovascular health.

The atherogenic property demonstrates how likely the food is to lead to fatty buildup in the blood vessels. Avocado oil has a lower atherogenic property compared to corn or coconut oil and a similar effect to olive oil (3).

Diabetes

In experimental studies, avocado oil supplementation has been found to improve insulin sensitivity while also reducing blood lipid levels and inflammation markers (4).

Replacing butter with avocado oil can lead to improved glycemic, insulinemic, and lipidemic blood profiles (3).

Article author photo Victoria Mazmanyan
Education: General Medicine at YSMU
Last updated: June 20, 2023
Medically reviewed by Igor Bussel

Infographic

Vegetable oil vs Avocado oil infographic
Infographic link

Macronutrient Comparison

Macronutrient breakdown side-by-side comparison
Equal in Fats - 100
100%
Protein: 0 g
Fats: 100 g
Carbs: 0 g
Water: 0 g
Other: 0 g
100%
Protein: 0 g
Fats: 100 g
Carbs: 0 g
Water: 0 g
Other: 0 g
Equal in Fats - 100

Comparison summary table

Pay attention to the rightmost column. It displays the amounts side by side, giving a clearer understanding of the difference.
Vegetable oil Avocado oil
Lower in price ok
Rich in vitamins ok
Lower in Sugar ok
Lower in Cholesterol ok
Lower in Saturated Fat ok
Lower in Sodium Equal
Lower in Glycemic Index Equal
Rich in minerals Equal

All nutrients comparison - raw data values

Nutrient Vegetable oil Avocado oil Opinion
Fats 100g 100g
Calories 884kcal 884kcal
Iron 0.13mg 0mg Vegetable oil
Zinc 0.02mg 0mg Vegetable oil
Vitamin E 14.78mg Vegetable oil
Choline 0.2mg Vegetable oil
Vitamin K 21µg Vegetable oil
Saturated Fat 14.367g 11.56g Avocado oil
Monounsaturated Fat 48.033g 70.554g Avocado oil
Polyunsaturated fat 33.033g 13.486g Vegetable oil

Which food is preferable for your diet?

ok
ok
is better in case of low diet
Vegetable oil Avocado oil
Low Fats diet Equal
Low Carbs diet Equal
Low Calories diet Equal
Low Glycemic Index diet Equal

People also compare

Vitamins & Minerals Daily Need Coverage Score

The summary scores indicate the extent to which this food can fulfill your daily vitamin and mineral requirements if you consume 3 servings, consisting of 100 grams of each (an approximation of 3 serving sizes).
Vitamins Daily Need Coverage Score
27%
Vegetable oil
0%
Avocado oil
Minerals Daily Need Coverage Score
1%
Vegetable oil
0%
Avocado oil

Comparison summary

Which food is cheaper?
Vegetable oil
Vegetable oil is cheaper (difference - $0.7)
Which food is richer in vitamins?
Vegetable oil
Vegetable oil is relatively richer in vitamins
Which food is lower in Sugar?
Avocado oil
Avocado oil is lower in Sugar (difference - 0g)
Which food is lower in Cholesterol?
Avocado oil
Avocado oil is lower in Cholesterol (difference - 0mg)
Which food is lower in Saturated Fat?
Avocado oil
Avocado oil is lower in Saturated Fat (difference - 2.807g)
Which food contains less Sodium?
?
The foods are relatively equal in Sodium (0 mg)
Which food is lower in glycemic index?
?
The foods have equal glycemic indexes (0)
Which food is richer in minerals?
?
It cannot be stated which food is richer in vitamins. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information.

References

All the values for which the sources are not specified explicitly are taken from FDA’s Food Central. The exact link to the food presented on this page can be found below.

  1. Vegetable oil - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/167737/nutrients
  2. Avocado oil - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/173573/nutrients

All the Daily Values are presented for males aged 31-50, for 2000-calorie diets.

Data provided by FoodStruct.com should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.