Malaysian Palm Oil Council

Red Palm Oil & its Health Benefits

Consumption of Red palm oil has increased all over the world. It is reported to provide various health benefits that lead to a rise in its usage. People have been using it for years as it helps in reducing cholesterol levels and betters brain health. The fruit of the oil palm tree is the source of antioxidant-rich red palm oil.

Let us understand in detail about red palm oil and its health benefits.

What is Red palm oil?

This oil originates from the fruit of oil palms. These trees grow around 20 meters long that can produce anywhere with 20-30 leaves every year. The reason why unrefined palm oil is said to be red palm might sound strange to you, but it is just because of its reddish-orange color.

This oil comes from kernel and pulp of the fruit, and as per the experts, 100 kgs of palm fruit produces around 23 kgs of red palm oil. As it has a good yield and is comparatively cheaper, palm oil has become a common ingredient for cooking in many kitchens globally.

This oil is a rich source of phytonutrients such as tocopherols, squalene, carotenoids, and coenzyme Q10; all of them have nutritional characteristics and oxidative endurance.

This was about the red palm oil; now, let us understand the Red palm oil benefits so that you can use it in the right manner and understand how important can it be for your health.

Red Palm Oil Health Benefits

  • Reduces cholesterol level- Increased cholesterol level can be a significant risk factor for heart diseases. The reason for high cholesterol is the building of too much fatty substance in the arteries, as it makes it hard and thin, which pushes the heart to work harder for pumping blood throughout the body.

In research done by experts, it was found that the red palm oil reduces bad LDL cholesterol level by 13% and reduces triglyceride levels to 6.7%.

  • Boosts Brain health- Amongst the other health benefits, this is one of the most significant health benefits of palm oil. This oil is a rich source of tocotrienols, which is a form of Vitamin E which possesses potent antioxidant properties that are good for the health of your brain.

It supports brain health by raising blood circulation by collateral arteries to the areas of the brain that suffered an ischemic stroke. According to the studies, it has been seen that palm oil helps in protecting our delicate polyunsaturated fats in the brain, lessens the risk of stroke, slow dementia progression, and prevents the growth of brain lesions.

  • Prevents or treats the lack of Vitamin A- You must have heard of various palm oil health benefits, but this might sound new to you. Research tells that if you add red palm oil to the diet of a pregnant woman, it increases Vitamin A in them and their breastfed infants. Additionally, it also helps children in developing countries and reduces the risk of Vitamin A deficiency.

It helps in improving Vitamin A status in beings that have a deficiency or are at the risk of deficiency.

There are many red palm oil nutrition facts, but one of the significant points is that it is as effective as taking a Vitamin A supplement. If you take a dose of around 8 grams every day, it can work in the best manner for your body.

  • Lessens Oxidative stress- Red palm oil is a reliable source of beneficial antioxidants that supports minimizing inflammation and oxidative stress that is created by free radicals. These free radicals are extremely reactive compounds that might develop in the body because of some of the reasons such as inadequate diet, pressure, or too much exposure to pollution.

If it is not treated in time, they can construct up in your body and might commence oxidative stress, damage of cells, and even might cause chronic diseases. Red palm oil helps in diminishing oxidative stress and inflammation in just a couple of weeks.

Frequently Asked Questions about Red Palm Oil:

What is red palm oil used for?

Red Palm oil makes an excellent cooking oil for baking, sautéing, dipping, and frying over medium heat. There are various uses of red palm oil. The fatty acids are very stable in palm oil and are perfect for medium cooking temperatures. Besides, tropical oils have historically been used in body care, from massage to lotions and formulations. Red palm oil has so many excellent advantages, and it doesn’t just go for frying. In addition to pantry use, a vital source of antioxidants is red palm oil, which could lessen the looks of aging and preserve the skin.

Is red palm oil good for you?

It is right for you because research suggests that red palm oil’s antioxidant effect can help defend against various health problems, including osteoporosis, asthma, eye problems, muscular dystrophy, arthritis, and liver problems. By shielding the skin from harmful UV rays, it may also slow down the premature aging processes.

The unique source of vitamin-E (Tocotrienol) in red palm oil, when it comes to the brain, prevents harmful damage and increases blood flow to the brain cells, helping combat Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Red palm oil has a high antioxidant content, which makes it a robust anti-cancer food. While tocotrienols can be found in many foods like rice bran, barley, etc., Tocotrienol’s richest source is red palm oil. Findings suggest this vitamin E source may help the fight against skin, stomach, and other cancers, etc.

Is red palm oil good for your skin?

Yes, it’s perfect for the skin. Red palm oil isn’t highly processed. Instead it is a chemically stable natural saturated fat. This makes them ideal for your skin and hair because when exposed to sunlight, the oil doesn’t start to oxidize! Instead, they soak in your hair and skin, safeguarding and nurturing your skin. Red palm oil is also unique since it comprises of vitamin E, tocopherol, and tocotrienols. This helps shield the skin from sun damage and can eliminate scar formation.

Red palm oil is a natural component of coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10). The levels of coenzyme Q10 (Ubiquinone) continue to decrease with aging. This means that if you want to reduce the appearance of aging, you could do that so by applying CoQ10 to the beauty regimen. It’s also another enzyme that can preserve your cells and increase collagen and elasticity in your skin.

Is red palm oil good for hair?

As mentioned previously, red palm oil is also rich in vitamin E, which stimulates the hair by boosting hair follicle cell formation and decreases hair graying, leading to healthier hair. In red palm oil, the carotenoids are also responsible for cell growth and division and can keep the hair from being thin and breakable. 

Does red palm oil darken the skin?

No, Red Palm oil instead lightens the skin. It’s high in Vitamin E, so it’s very healing to fight free radicals and wrinkles. They use it a lot in cosmetics, but cosmetics typically have a negligible amount of beneficial ingredients. Antioxidant activity exhibited by red palm oil can help thwart free radicals that can boost the skin’s brightness, postpone wrinkles, and protect cell membranes. 

Red Palm Oil instead protects your skin from harmful UV rays, which darkens the skin. The topical application of palm oil for skin will act as a sunscreen with SPF15. Moreover, Tocotrienol, a form of vitamin E present in red palm oil, helps improve blood circulation, heal minor burns, avoid wrinkles, cell regeneration, and lighten dark spots’ appearance.

Can you cook with red palm oil?

Red Palm oil is an excellent cooking oil for baking, sautéing, sauces, and frying over medium heat. It’s particularly delightful tossed with popcorn, or stews and sauces. All tropical oils are great cooking oils like the red palm. When used for frying, it does not break down or mutate. It is naturally both free of trans-fat free and free of cholesterol. 

The excellent heat tolerance and healthy formulation of palm oil make it one of the most nutritious choices available.  Instead of potentially dangerous unsaturated fats (sunflower, corn), using palm oil as cooking oil is a brilliant example.

Is red palm oil suitable for frying?

With a balanced composition (50% saturated and 50% unsaturated), palm oil is perfect for cooking, even frying, as it is very heat-resistant. Palm oil is mostly composed of saturated and monounsaturated fats, making it an excellent choice for deep frying. The flavor can be neutral, mainly if you use the unrefined variety known as red palm oil.

Besides, red palm oil (RPO) is non-hydrogenated, has high oxidative stability, and contains high levels of natural antioxidants, such as carotenoids. Frying French fries (fried with red palm oil) will add as an additional carotenoid source in the diet. The carotenoids content of red palm oil, 480 mg / L, serves to make this oil perfect for developing worldwide functional foods and provides high oxidative stability and lengthy shelf-life for the oil.

What does red palm oil taste like?

Red Palm Oil, with a creamy, buttery texture, has a mild carrot-like flavor. Some red palm oils have a harsh or strong flavor. However, the cold-filtration process removes any strong taste while retaining the nutrients. Some red palm oils have what might be described as an intense or strong odor and flavor. Some also have a proprietary cold-filtration process that results in a delicate, buttery flavor excellent for cooking and baking. 

Red palm oil adds flavor, color to dishes. Some say it has a bold, vegetal, paprika-like flavor that enhances many spicy foods and is widely used in Africa, India, Southeast Asia, and Indonesia.

What is the difference between palm oil and red palm oil?

Palm kernel oil is derived from the fruit’s kernel or seed, whereas red palm oil comes from palm’s flesh. Red palm oil is typically orange-red due to its rich carotenoid content. In its unprocessed state, red palm oil has an intense deep red color because of its excellent carotene content. On the other hand, palm kernel oil lacks carotenoids and is not red, but rather transparent or yellow in color depending on how it is processed.

The other difference between the two is their nutrition profiles. Red palm oil’s saturated fat content is 40%-50%, whereas the palm kernel oil is saturated by about 81%. The third distinction is how each of them is extracted or “refined.” Palm kernel oil is typically refined, deodorized, and bleached, whereas red palm oil is more commonly virgin or unrefined.

Should red palm oil be refrigerated?

No, the palm oil doesn’t need refrigeration after opening. It can be kept at room temperature. Palm oil is stable at room temperature and will stay fresh for quite some time in your pantry. But It is best stored in a cool, low light location. Refrigeration is not necessary, but if you won’t be using it that often, keeping it in the refrigerator can extend its shelf life.

Bottom Line

It is the most widely-used oil in the world as it has proven to be better than other oils in the same range in various aspects. The benefits of palm oil are endless, but these were some of the significant ones of red palm oil.

Thus, including it in your everyday diet can have various advantages to your health. This oil has a unique flavor that you would love when eating food made by using it.

Well, people also say that it has some health risks too, but they are pretty minimal as there are very fewer chances of people being allergic to it or develop any adverse side effects. Also, you should try and buy the products that are RSPO certified, as it affirms that you are acquiring it from yielders that prioritize livable exercises.

So stay fit and healthy by using good quality red palm oil!

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