The Health Benefits of Cooking With Safflower Oil
Although there are technically two different varieties of safflower from which safflower oil is produced, when it comes to cooking in the kitchen, one is more popular than the other. High in monounsaturated fatty acid, or oleic acid, safflower oil (we’ll call it “version 1”), is even lower in saturates than olive oil. Equally favorable as other vegetable oils for cooking purposes, safflower oil counts among its benefits a very high smoke point and low saturated fat.
Smoke point? Don’t worry. We can explain that too. The term smoke point, when speaking about cooking oil, tends to refer to the temperature where cooking fat or oil breaks down into two parts, glycerol and free fatty acids, which produce smoke. According to Wikipedia, “the smoke point also marks the beginning of both flavor and nutritional degradation.” So logically, cooking oils that possess a high smoke point tend to be more healthy for eaters, because more of the nutrients are preserved as temperatures rise. Other oils with lower smoke points break down faster and lose nutritional value quicker.
More Cool Stuff About Safflower Oil
Did you know that just a little dose of safflower oil might help reduce the risk of heart disease? A new study is out, showing the health benefits of safflower oil regularly included in your diet. Though common in use, safflower oil use over the course of about 4 months, when a part of a daily eating regimen, can improve good cholesterol, blood sugar, insulin insensitivity, and inflammaion in some women.
And did you know that safflower oil also has the highest source of polyunsaturated fats (PUFA) when compared to every other type of vegetable oil? We’re talking a whopping near-79% polyunsaturated fatty acids. Additionally, other important nutrients in safflower oil include omega-6 fatty acids, Vitamins E and K and a tiny bit of choline.
According to studies, safflower oil is a monster when it comes to eliminating excess fat that the body has stored, making it a perfect dietary companion that doesn’t fall under the category of “fad” or “yo-yo” dieting. The cis-linoleic acid in safflower oil goes through a process that signals the body to take its quantities of brown fat, and burn calories. As if we needed more reasons to make safflower oil the go-to cooking oil in the kitchen.
And there’s hair and skin benefits, too. Safflower oil promotes hair growth and can be instrumental in creating a healthy skin profile, due to the Vitamin E in its makeup. Dry hair? Fried hair from too much dying or bleaching? Why not give yourself a safflower oil massage in your hair and scalp, and see the wonders that it works for you. There’s no scent, so you won’t have to worry about stinking up the house with the smell of cooking oil, either. The oil is absorbed easily into the scalp, expediting the benefits that much easier.
[Photos Via: Wikipedia, eSutras]