Safflower oil for overall health

With so many choices, Indian families often get perplexed about what oil they must cook with. It’s just a false notion that oil is always bad for health. It’s all about knowing the various kinds of oils in the market and what each one can do for you. Safflower oil has high nutritive value and is known to be a heart-friendly oil. Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated are the types of safflower oil available in the market. The monounsaturated version though not healthier than the polyunsaturated one, is more shelf-stable.

Uses of Safflower Oil

1. Lowers cholesterol levels

Safflower oil is full of unsaturated fatty acids, especially omega-6 fatty acids, that help in reducing cholesterol levels. Safflower oil also contains linoleic acid that reduces low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. LDL is the primary marker for heart diseases.

2. Controls diabetes

Regular consumption of safflower oil will help prevent diabetes. It is loaded with plant-based polyunsaturated fatty acids, that help in increasing insulin sensitivity. The omega-6 fatty acids in the oil help reduce blood sugar levels and so, it’s a great oil for diabetics to use in their cooking.

3. Controls atherosclerosis

The linoleic acid in safflower oil prevents inflammation, hardening of arteries, and blood vessels getting thick. The polyunsaturated fatty acids decrease the chances of fatty plaques in the blood vessels.

4. Reduces risk of obesity

A study says that if you take in 8 grams of this oil daily, it can tone your abs. The oil can also help the body release serotonin levels in the body. Serotonin is also called as the ‘happy hormone’ that keeps depression at bay. Also, the omega-6 fatty acids burn fat and prevent becoming overweight.

5. Prevents pruritus or itching

Safflower oil moisturizes the body and so, can be used externally in limited amounts. If added to the water while bathing, it helps to remove all the impurities on the skin. When applied to the scars on the skin, it helps lighten them and makes the skin look brighter.

6. Eases pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS)

Cold-pressed safflower oil can regulate the prostaglandins in the body with the help of high linoleic acid. The regulation of prostaglandins will monitor all the hormones and thus prevent symptoms like pain and cramps in the abdomen which occur before or during menstrual cycles.

7. Constipation

Safflower oil acts as a lubricant in the large intestine working as a mild laxative and offering relief from straining at hard stools. This oil also helps digestion by strengthening the stomach and intestines.

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