Is sunflower oil bad or not? Let’s find out all its beneficial properties and possible side effects.
Sunflower oil is a vegetable oil extracted from the seeds of the Helianthus annus plant, commonly known as sunflower.
This product is rich in vitamin E and essential fatty acids, but it also has some side effects that should not be underestimated. For example, it is very caloric and it is not ideal for frying. Nevertheless, it is often used in place of the olive oil because it is cheaper. Let’s see in detail all its properties and side effects.
Sunflower oil: properties
Sunflower oil is rich of unsaturated fatty acids, particularly linoleic and oleic acid, both precursors of the essential fatty acids omega 3 and 6. These fatty acids are a valuable aid in the fight against cholesterol, because they lower levels of LDL cholesterol, the “bad” one, and increase those of HLD cholesterol, the “good” one.
In addition, sunflower oil contains high amounts of vitamin E, wich has a strong antioxidant power. It is very good, then, to counteract free radicals and premature aging. Moreover, it is perfect to ensure the proper functioning of muscles and to strengthen the immune system. From this point of view, we can even consider it better than olive oil.
In addition to vitamin E, it also contains vitamins B6, B5, B3, and folates, all essential elements for the health of the nervous system. With regard to minerals, sunflower oil has a good content of manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, iron, copper, selenium, and zinc.
Sunflower oil: side effects
Is sunflower oil bad? The answer is no, if you use it in the right way. Even if the extra virgin olive oil is definitely the best one, you can use this oil raw as a dressing for salads and other dishes.
Many people use this product for frying, because it is less expensive than olive oil. However, this is not a good choice, because this product has a very low smoke point. High temperatures tends to deteriorate it and let it release potentially toxic substances. Then, it is better to use it raw or at low temperatures and use other oils, such as olive and peanut ones, for frying.
Sunflower oil: calories
Sunflower oil is very high in calories: 100 grams contain 884 calories. Better, then, not to exaggerate with its consumption.
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