A good part of Americans are very self-conscious about their health habits. (Which are not the same as their eating habits) We will usually consume every piece of advice given by a TV guru offering the next big solution to prevent health issues. The marketing machine is designed to offer solutions to people looking to solve weight problems, using the cheapest advice possible.
There have been a few fads over the years and Americans have felt hard for some of them. After a high-profile segment in the show of TV personality Dr. Oz. Safflower oil became a nationwide necessity for people looking to keep their health in check. But does this marketing exercise lives up to the hype? Let’s take a general look at the origin of this plant, and the refining process that made it a nation-wide phenomenon.
The Safflower, or as is called with the botanic denomination in Latin “Carthamus Tinctorus l” is an annual plant of the family of the composite. The flower is native from Asia and Africa, from central India to most of the Middle East up to the Nile River. The plant can withstand some very though conditions. It can grow in nutritionally poor soil and it requires little moist. It can’t grow in the shade but it can tolerate drought.
The safflower Is a big flower that can reach 1.2mts from the root. It’s rich in pollen so it’s usually a good target for bees. The safflower plant has flowers that can be red, orange, yellow or white. Dried flowers can be used to manufacture fabrics, dye and condiment. The seeds are a source of oil and it’s the most modern use given in these times to the plant. The oil itself can be used to fabricate varnish and paints of industrial use. In the UE is more commonly used as a cooking ingredient. It can be found in the form of refined oil, cooking oil and margarine. It’s valued for dietary reasons in the western world.
Safflower oil is related to weight loss by nutritionists and doctors. Despise the rich proportion of polyunsaturated fats in its composition. Used in moderation it’s been said to help blood clotting. The high content of omega-6 in the oil helps with heart problems and the prevention of diabetes. It’s also rich in oleic acid, a substance that helps with hair care and hair growth. The presence of linoleic acid also boosts skin care and helps deal women with PMS.
Among other properties that could be mentioned is the pungent flavor, it can act on the heart and liver channels. It can be used as Laxative, diaphoretic, diuretic, mild sedative, nervine, emmenagogue, purgative and anti-rheumatic. It can be used to invigorate circulation of blood and cut blood stasis to relieve pain.
Safflawer oil can be found in two presentations. Both offer nutritious advantages that you can take into consideration when cooking:
When looking for cooking oil with a high smoking point, it doesn’t come any simpler than cooking than safflower oil. It can withstand very high temperatures without losing composition unlike olive oil. It makes a good choice for fried foods, cooking eggs and baking goods
This version is a more refined presentation of the oil with a softer taste that allows preparation of salad dressings. and other raw recipes like sushi. Unlike the previous presentation, refined safflower oil can go rancid very quickly if it’s not stored properly.
Use of safflower is not limited to the production of cooking oils, it can also be used as an ingredient for lotions, lip balm, shampoos and conditioners. The head of the flowers are edible and they can be used as part of salads once cleaned and washed. Or as an alternative to saffron. The dried stalks of the flower are used to make fuel or paper. The seeds are also used to make bird seed. And the flavor has been synthesized to make instant soft drinks in the Asian market. The leaves are used to make color dyes for fabric. They can also be used to make tea with medical properties.
At first sight it looks like everything is in order with this new cohabitant of our kitchens. The American Heart Association even recommends the use of to cook healthier meals. Despise some claims from CLA researchers from the Ohio State University, stating that the actual contribution of safflower oil has no better performance than other oils in the market. And that it only contains 0.7 mg of CLA/ g fat. This means that the oil doesn’t have the “belly bust” effect so widely promoted.
So far two established association offered counter points to the use of safflower as a healthy ingredient to your meals. But none of them claim it’s unhealthy or damaging to your health. The best thing you can do as a customer is do your own research. And take the facts laid out in here as reference to take a look around the internet to check the truth for yourself. What we can’t deny now is the presence of safflower in the market as a firm competitor to refined and cooking oils. The best advice we can offer is to be mindful with the things you consume.