Why is everyone is hooked to Palm Oil?
Health and Nutrition Benefits of Palm oil: Palm oil is extracted from the palm tree and it is widely used throughout the country in frying. This oil consists of Vitamin E, Beta-carotene and saturated and unsaturated fats. This oil prevents deficiencies like Vitamin A and fights cancer and brain diseases caused due to ageing. This oil also treats malaria, controls high cholesterol and high blood pressure. This amazing oil increases the metabolic rate in humans and helps in weight loss. It is the main cooking ingredient used in Southeast Asia, Africa, and Brazil. Palm oil is semi-solid at room temperature and has very few highly saturated vegetable fats. Palm oil has phytonutrients like Sterols that have campesterol. Sitosterol and stigmasterol. Carotenoids are also present in the oil that has alpha, beta and gamma carotenes along with water-soluble antioxidants and flavonoids that are powerful.
Benefits of Palm oil:
- Treats Pancreatic Cancer: Palm Oil helps in treating pancreatic cancer as it contains Tocotrienols that are bioactive compounds that help fight pancreatic cancer.
- Provides antioxidants: Palm Oil has vegetable fats that are naturally saturated. It has carotenoids and tocotrienols that provide health benefits like skin nutrition, cardioprotection, and neuroprotection.
- Better brain health: It improves the energy levels as Tocotrienols supports brain health and increases blood circulation through collateral arteries in the area of the brain that has suffered from a stroke.
- Essential nutrition: Palm oil provides all the necessary optimum nutrition for the growing children and it facilitates to provide the required calories to the people suffering from malnutrition due to highly processed foods that have sugary carbohydrates.
- Risk Reduction in Coronary Heart Disease: consuming palm oil helps in the neutralization of total cholesterol and increases High-density Lipoprotein which is beneficial for the heart. It thus helps lower the risk of coronary heart disease.
- Anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties: Palm oil has Tocotrienols that have the ability to fight cholesterol, cancer and has antioxidants. The product is also anti-inflammatory.
Palm oil helps in food security: Oil palm is better as it uses less land, fewer fertilizers, and fewer pesticides. If the industry displaces palm oil then there will be more use of land, fertilizers, and pesticides. Palm oil is abundantly efficient and simple to grow which is why there is more food security. The world is still developing and is critical for the generations that are unborn and higher population growth expected in the upcoming decades. Palm oil will be a lifeline for the developing world as there are many people who currently consume palm oil and it provides them with required vitamins and energy. With the increase in land pressure, palm oil can produce more food as it uses less land.
Palm oil is far ahead from other oils in terms of productivity and in terms of food security and land use palm oil is the best option. Palm oil is an SDG commodity that plays a great role in feeding the world indirectly and directly and plays a role in tackling the issues. Palm oil is a key factor for the reduction of rural poverty in countries like Indonesia and Malaysia. Palm oil plantations in rural and remote areas have uplifted the income of people there. As compared to other vegetable oils, palm oils use nine times less land to produce the same amount of oil. Replacing palm oils with other vegetable oils can lead to more exploitation of land and causes a threat to biodiversity.
Palm oil and its uses:
75% of palm oil is used in the food and the rest is used for cleaning products, cosmetics, and biofuels. Palm oil ingredients are there in about 50% of products available in the supermarket. Palm oil is used in many countries for simple frying and here are other markets and industries that use palm oil:
- Personal care and cosmetics
- Retail food and snack manufacturers
- Biofuel and energy
- Animal feed
- Foodservice industry
Is palm oil’s success it’s greatest enemy?
Since palm oil is a huge success worldwide with growing consumption every year and less land use, other vegetable oils are facing great competition. The demand for palm oil is expected to increase three times by 2050 as it uses less land to grow. However, people bad mouthing it must understand that banning it can be disastrous and it will affect the livelihoods of millions of people. More than 70% of products contain palm oil and nowadays sustainable palm oil is available as they meet the environmental and social criteria. Palm oil provides a large number of benefits, which is why it is always targeted worldwide.
For more information visit the Malaysian Palm Oil Council