what is it, what is it for, characteristics, properties and uses

Sunflower oil, rich in unsaturated fatty acids, precursors to omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, is useful for heart health and energy production.

Contents

Characteristics of sunflower oil.

Sunflower oil is obtained by pressing the seeds of the plant. Helianthus annus.

This beautiful yellow flower that follows the movement of the sun is native to America and even the Incas used it 3000 years ago for its properties.

He belongs to the family of Asteraceae and in fact its large flower is actually an inflorescence composed of many small flowers, each of which produces a fruit with a seed inside. The plant can reach 3 meters in height, and the inflorescence can have a diameter of 85 cm.

At room temperature, sunflower oil is liquid, straw-yellow in color and has a delicate fragrance.

Composition of sunflower oil.

The composition of sunflower oil is essentially in unsaturated fatty acids, approximately 32% oleic acid (monounsaturated) and 52% linoleic acid (polyunsaturated), precursors of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.

These omegas are important for heart health, energy production, oxygen transport, the creation of hemoglobin in the blood, and even keeping the body’s hormonal system in balance.

One of the components of sunflower oil is vitamin E, also known as tocopherol. Its main property is to be an excellent antioxidant, in quantities up to five times greater than those of olive oil, protecting cell membranes and fighting against free radicals, which are also responsible for cell aging.

benefits of sunflower oil

To slow down photoaging, sunflower oil can be used directly on the skin, and in the form of an ointment it will restore smoothness.

In addition, the vitamin E contained in sunflower oil is essential for the proper functioning of muscles and the strengthening of the immune system.

There’s also a healthy dose of ascorbic acid, which works synergistically to increase antioxidant power and reduce the risk of developing cancer and heart disease.

100 ml of sunflower oil contain 28 mg of vitamin E, which corresponds to 280% of the recommended daily allowance.

The composition of vitamins is very varied, including B6, which protects the fibers of the nervous system, B5 (pantothenic acid), B3 (niacin or PP) and folate, all useful for the proper functioning of the nervous system and the creation of body tissue. digestive system.

There is also a considerable wealth of minerals, such as selenium, iron, copper, zinc, phosphorus, magnesium and manganese. Each of them contributes to the unique properties of sunflower oil, such as its ability to strengthen tissues and bones, promote blood circulation, produce hormones, balance the immune system and reduce the risk of cardiovascular illnesses.

Sunflower oil, being rich in unsaturated acids, easily goes rancid, so it is best to store it in the refrigerator, away from heat and light, in a tightly closed bottle, preferably dark glass to avoid that moisture does not enter the light.

Properties and uses of sunflower oil.

In the food industry and in the kitchen, it is used for frying or as a crude oil to season salads or vegetable dishes, to prepare sauces and sauces (mayonnaise) and of course also to prepare mixed vegetable pickles.

In the domain of body well-beingis known as a good health ally due to its wide composition of vitamins, minerals and beneficial substances.

A simple rinse with sunflower oil when the mucous membranes of the mouth are inflamed or the gums red, and its cooling and soothing properties will help restore the health of the affected membranes.

integrated in power supply in a way as a dietary supplement, one or two tablespoons can be used raw in dishes to obtain the recommended daily dose of vitamin E and a large amount of vitamins and minerals useful for the total well-being of our body.

in cosmeticsis very useful for rejuvenating the skin, eliminating aging caused by exposure to the sun (photoaging) and preventing scarring, smoothing wrinkles and restoring the health of the skin of the whole body by softening, nourishing and revitalizing it. giving it back its elasticity.

Applied directly to the skin as a cleanser, it is able to keep bacteria out of the pores of the skin, thus preventing acne thanks to its composition of vitamins and carotenoids.

Sunflower oil is a good massage oil base against muscular or rheumatic pains.

In the Cosmetic products it can only be used as an ingredient if the oil contains a good percentage of oleic acid.

To keep all the properties of sunflower oil intact, you have to choose the product by reading the label and preferring to buy it if the extraction is cold and the plant is grown organically.

In the livestock industrywhere sunflower products are used for animal feed, less degradation of sausage meat has been observed, which increases its marketability.

Sunflower oil is a product that can be used make biodiesel. There are recipes for its preparation at home. The only difficulty is finding anhydrous alcohol (ethanol), which does not contain water. The process is not that complex: after mixing the ethanol with the sunflower oil, the glycerin is deposited (removed) and the part that remains on top is the homemade biodiesel. After this step, subsequent cleaning by washing is necessary to obtain the biofuel, and decantation to remove all the residual water. Besides sunflower oil, rapeseed oil and soybean oil are also used as biofuels.

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