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I know that heating oil to its smoking point is not the best idea. However, as far as I know, consuming cold (i.e. non-heated) olive oil (e.g. on salads) has some positive effects (which are?).

Additionally, I heard that if heated beyond some point well below its smoking point (something < 100°C, IIRC) it looses these positive properties (and may even become unhealthy?).

Is this correct? If so, why? And where is that threshold?

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closed as off topic by hobodave Jan 27 '12 at 15:31

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As noted in our faq general health questions are considered off-topic here. –  hobodave Jan 27 '12 at 15:31
@hobodave: According to the faq, 'General health and diet issue (e.g. "Is cauliflower healthy?")' are off-topic. But this is directly related with actually cooking something (and thereby changing its properties). This is explicitly covered by the faq: 'Cooking & food preparation methods'. –  bitmask Jan 27 '12 at 15:37
@bitmask your question would have been acceptable if you would have supplied what you think is a "positive property" in olive oil and would have asked if it is retained after heating. As it is now, you are asking us why olive oil is healthy - which is exactly the kind of thing we can't tell you and have therefore excluded per FAQ. –  rumtscho Jan 27 '12 at 15:52

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