What is Sunflower?
Sunflower is an oil extracting plant. The sunflower oil is extracted from the sunflower seed. Sunflower oil is considered as a non-volatile type of organic compound which has a high boiling point and less evaporation rate in liquid & solid form. It is popularly known as frying oil and use in food preparation. Due to its non-volatile nature, it is one of the best oil to use as food frying oil.
Based on the fatty acid content the sunflower oil can be divided into four different categories.
1. High Linoleic,
2. High Oleic,
3. High Stearic,
4. Mild Oleic.
In the high linoleic type of sunflower oil, the linoleic content is around 70% & hence called linoleic. Likewise in high oleic variety, the oleic content is 82%, stearic content of high stearic oil is 18% and the mild oleic sunflower variety has around 65% of oleic fatty acid content.
As per the use of the sunflower oil is concerned, it is widely used as frying oil. Frying of snacks, chips as well as French fries is done with this oil. Besides, sunflower is used in butter form in Europe. The sunflower is used as vehicle fuel with diesel due to high viscosity.
Sunflower Oil Health Benefits:
Sunflower has numerous health benefits. The importance of its health benefits gains more hike due to the edible nature of this oil. It has a highly balanced fatty acid amount of LDL & HDL which has the following health benefits.
1. Reduce the possibility of cardiovascular diseases: The oleic fatty acid is a monounsaturated fatty acid & consumption of which lower the risk of heart blockage or heart attack. The phenolic & choline type phytochemicals present in the sunflower oil are very good for heart health. It also has selenium content which helps in heart disease as well as reducing the cancer cell development process.
2. Reduce the risk of cancer & asthma: The sunflower oil is rich in vitamin ‘E’ content which helps to prevent the development of cancerous cell as well as asthma & other allergic problems. Not only that the carotenoids found in sunflower oil also work excellent on cancer prevention function of the body.
3. Responsible for good bone health: Sunflower oil is also beneficial for bone health. It prevents the development of arthritis. The Vitamin A found in this oil reduces the risk of cataracts development in the eyes.
4. Keep balance cholesterol level: The lecithin present in sunflower oil helps to keep balance cholesterol level in the body. The high level of an unsaturated fatty acid of this oil helps to keep the LDL / HDL level balance.
5. Good Antioxidant: Sunflower oil is act as a good antioxidant to reduce the free radicals & oxidative stress of the body. These free radicals due to environmental pollution are the main cause of different chronic & metabolic diseases. The tocopherols present in sunflower oil works towards neutralizing these free radicals.
6. Help Body Development: Protein is building blocks of our body. Protein cannot be stored in our body and required on daily basis. The sunflower oil has some amount of protein which helps to fulfill the daily requirements of protein to our body.
7. Oil Massage To Baby: The sunflower oil is playing a role to prevent outer infection on the skin of the baby. So it is very good as baby oil.
8. Great skin moisturizer: Due to heavy antioxidants & vitamin E like substance, the sunflower oil is considered an excellent moisturizing product. It is highly used by the cosmetic industries for the manufacturing of different products. It prevents many skin problems like pimples, acne, inflammation, skin irritation, eczema to happen. Sunflower oil is a good skincare product. It protects the skin to be damaged by the ultraviolet rays from the sun to increase the skin glow by increasing the smoothness and reducing the wrinkles. It prevents sunburn, skin cancer & other skin damage by neutralizing the free radicals.
9. Reduce Ageing: The atmospheric pollution, free radicals and UV rays of sun increase the rate of skin aging. The antioxidant properties of sunflower oil help in reduction of the early skin aging process. Like skin, the sunflower oil also helps to moisturize the hair and reduces hair fall, frizzy hair & other hair problems.
Sunflower Oil Side-effects:
Everything in this world has pros & cons likewise the sunflower oil also have some side-effects. Let’s know about these to prepare for any kind of unwanted situation.
• Take precaution during pregnancy period. The effect of sunflower oil consumption is unknown for the infant baby. If you are breastfeeding your baby avoid using sunflower oil over the breast skin which may cause health issue to your baby.
• Some people develop an allergic reaction towards consumption & external use of sunflower oil. If you will notice any kind of allergic reaction due to sunflower oil then it is advised to consult your doctor immediately and stop using it further.
• The side-effect of sunflower oil is very harmful in the case of the diabetic patient. It helps growing blood sugar levels & insulin during fasting and also blood fat after a meal. It is also responsible for artery hardening problem among type-2 diabetic patient.
Sunflower Oil Nutrition:
As like other oil the sunflower oil is also rich in the fatty acid. The amounts of good unsaturated fatty acids are high in sunflower oil compare to other edible oil. Besides, Vitamins like ‘E’, ‘B-Complex’, ‘A’, ‘K’ along with beta-carotene is also present in the sunflower oil.
As per the mineral is concerned the sunflower oil has contained iron, niacin, calcium, folate, potassium like minerals. The fat present in this oil has high energy and provide a healthy amount of calories to the daily nutrition of the body. The triglyceride fatty acids present in the sunflower oil are linoleic acid also known as omega-6 fatty acid around 59%, oleic acid called omega-9 around 30%, stearic acid around 6% & palmitic acid which is about 5% found in it.
Originated from the America the sunflower oil is now used in all over the world due to its huge amount of health benefits, nutritional value & less side-effect. People give preference to sunflower oil over other oil like coconut, almond, olive oils for cooking.