Why the fuss?
Palm oil holds a substantial place in human nutrition and is the second most consued vegetable in the world. Yet the stigma attached to palm oil is causing alot of health and nutriton controvesy. Some modern nutritionist say that palm oil is not a healthy oil to include in our diet. Others associate the consumption of palm oil to risk of obesity and cardio vascular diseases in Africans. The truth of the matter is the powerful nutritive virtues of virgin organic red paml oil fruit cannot be compared to any other healthy oil in the market. Be it coconut, olive almond, canola, peanut, safflower, walnut, or even avocado oil – virgin organic palm oil has proven scientifically to have most nutritive value. Virgin organic sustainable red palm fruit (made fruit the oil palm fruit called Elaies guineensis) oil is otherwise one of the healthiest oil to consume but it should not be confused with palm kernel (made from the palm kernel or the seed)
The palm oil fruit is different from other plant and animal oils in its fatty acid composition. It is made up of 50% saturated, 40% unsaturated, and 10% polyunsaturated.
Health benefits of Red Palm Oil
Researchers from Monash University (Australia) and University of Uyoin (Nigeria) analyzed the key components that make palm oil so unique and both came up with strikingly similar conclusions:
In addition to MCFA’s, palm oil is also loaded with the following phytonutrients:
- Carotenoids (alpha-,beta-,and gamma-carotenes)
- Sterols (sitosterol, stigmasterol and campesterol)
- Vitamin E (tocopherols and tocotrienols)
- Water-soluble powerful antioxidants, phenolic acids and flavonoids
Subsequently, the health benefits of palm oil include reduced risk of a variety of disease processes including:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Arterial thrombosis
- Cognitive impairment
- Macular degeneration
- Platelet aggregation (blood clotting)
- Hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol levels)
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Vitamin A deficiency
Highest content of Vitamin A, E than Any Other Plant-Based Oil
Over the past two decades, researchers have intensely studied red palm oil’s effect on cardiovascular health and the preliminary results initially baffled scientists.Red palm oil contains the most abundant amount of vitamins A and E of any plant-based oil. Vitamins A and E are cancer cells killer and also help in the prevention strokes. Red palm fruit oil is also densely packed with numerous tocotrienols – a powerful form of vitamin E. Vitamin E-rich foods like red palm oil can help protect the brain from ischemic attack.
Research shows that though Red palm oil is indeed high in saturated fats, it actually plays a beneficial role in fighting heart disease and high cholesterol. But red palm oil’s benefits aren’t exclusive to heart health. Research is showing that the antioxidant power of red palm oil can be of help in protecting against a variety of health problems, including osteoporosis, asthma, cataracts, macular degeneration, arthritis, and liver disease. It can even slow down the premature aging processes by protecting the skin against damaging UV rays.
Bottomline: Red palm oil protects against disease.
Are you a nursing mother? Then red palm oil is especially great for you and baby. Studies show that adding red palm oil into the diet can double or triple the amount of Vitamin A in mother’s milk. Hence baby benefits not only from getting the Vitamin A they need but other important nutrients as well.
Bottomline: Red palm oil is a virtual powerhouse of nutrition.
It contains by far, more nutrients than any other dietary oil. In addition to beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, and lycopene it contains at least 20 other carotenes along with Vitamin E, Vitamin K, CoQ10, squalene, phytosterols, flavonoids, phenolic acids, and glycolipids.
Red palm oil is loaded with so many nutrients and antioxidants, it’s like a natural dietary supplement. In fact, it is currently being encapsulated and sold as a vitamin supplement. Think about that!
Is Palm Oil Good For You?
The research evidence helps us to answer that question with a big yes! Taking into consideration all its heath benefits, the bottmline is unprocessed red palm oil is very healthy for you. does this mean we can use half a bottle of oil to cook your favorite heritaage dish? Not at all! Remember, every thing in moderation.
Tip: Include 1-2 tablespoons of virgin red palm oil in your diet daily to benefit from this power food!
Avoid Processed and Hydrogenated Palm Oil
Take this to heart, avoid all processed, hydrogenated oil like the plague. The process of hydrogenation which is carried out to extend shelf life, complete negates the amazing health benefits of palm oil. Always buy and consume UNREFINED, COLD-PRESSED oils ONLY!
- Cambridge World History of Food. Palm Oil. Available at: http://www.cambridge.org/us/books/kiple/palmoil.htm.
- Edem DO. Palm oil: biochemical, physiological, nutritional, hematological, and toxicological aspects: a review. Plant Foods Hum Nutr 2002; 57(3-4): 319-41.
- Rink C et al. Tocotrienol vitamin E protects against preclinical canine ischemic stroke by inducing arteriogenesis. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 2011; 31(11): 2218-3
- Varatharajan R, et al. Antioxidant and pro-oxidant effects of oil palm (Elaeis guineensis) leaves extract in experimental diabetic nephropathy: a duration-dependent outcome. BMC Complement Altern Med 2013; 13: 242.
- Wattanapenpaiboon N, et al. Phytonutrient deficiency: the place of palm fruit. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr 2003; 12(3): 363-8.
Do you think red pal oil is health? We will like to hear you view!