Safflower oil, the oil derived from the thistle-like plant has been used for cooking for thousands of years. The plant does well in dry, arid and hot climates, and was cultivated first 4,000 years ago. The oil was originally cultivated in China, Iran, India and Egypt. The oil is supposed to be good for brain, heart, blood vessels and the skin. Its polyphenols can reduce inflammation and even aid in weight loss. Let’s take a closer look at the many health benefits of safflower oil.
11 – Amazing health benefits of safflower oil
1. Safflower oil might protect the heart
Safflower oil showed the decrease in LDL, triglycerides and total cholesterol in humans. It compared even better olive oil and coconut oil in the reduction of total cholesterol. But consumption of safflower oil did not increase the HDL content as much as some other oils do. So it is better than most oils in reducing LDL, but not as good in increasing HDL.
2. Safflower oil might help in weight loss
One of the health benefits of safflower oil could be aiding to lose weight. In a clinical trial conducted on 75 women, safflower oil was given as a supplement for 8 weeks. The oil helped to reduce BMI (Body Mass Index), body fat and waist circumference. The muscle mass also increased. Including safflower oil in your diet might be helpful for weight loss.
In another study, 8g of safflower oil in a day was given to 35 obese and postmenopausal women, with Type 2 diabetes. It was found that the waist fat had decreased and the muscle mass had increased. Consuming safflower oil in moderate doses can be used for weight loss, especially in the waist area, which has a lot of stubborn fat.
3. Safflower oil can reduce menstrual pain
Many women suffer from discomfort and pain during the menstrual cycle. Safflower oil has linoleic acid which regulates the prostaglandins. Prostaglandins cause the fluctuation of hormones and causes symptoms like pain in the body. So, one of the health benefits of safflower oil is to reduce the pain and discomfort experienced during menses.
4. Safflower oil can reduce inflammation
Inflammation in the body, such as the joints can indicate many diseases. You should visit a doctor and find out the precautions. Consuming safflower oil could also be helpful in reducing inflammation as it has many inflammatory properties. Many herbalists add safflower oil to medicines in order to treat inflammation.
5. Safflower oil might protect your brain
The health benefits of safflower oil can extend to the brain too. Just one dose of safflower oil increased the memory of 22 elderly adults. It improved the immediate memory, attention, speed and long-term memory as well.
6. It can be used to get soft and supple skin
You can get flawless skin with safflower oil. There are many formulations in the market, but they may not give you results which your desire. Natural oils like safflower are packed with linoleic acids as well as multi-vitamins which are essential for skin nourishment. For those who are plagued by blackheads, safflower oil can be the solution as it reduces blackheads.
Safflower oil is good for skin as it fights acne too. Acne is mostly caused by excess sebum production. Safflower oil can reduce sebum production which can reduce the acne. It rejuvenates dead tissue and skin cells. For radiant skin, you can use safflower oil and look younger too.
7. Safflower oil strengthens hair
Health benefits of safflower oil are many. The amazing oil can be an added nourishment to your hair. When you have dry and dull hair, you try out many creams and solutions which may not be effective. But according to beauty experts, safflower oil has the vitamins necessary to revive the scalp’s dryness, and make the hair follicles strong. Stronger hair follicles mean that you will have less hairfall. Massaging the scalp with safflower oil improves the circulation as well, resulting in shiny and glossy hair.
8. Safflower oil can help in managing diabetes
Diabetes is a disease which needs good control and management. Omega 6 fatty acids can keep blood sugar in control, and these healthy fatty acids are found in good quantities in safflower oil. Consuming safflower oil can help to regulate blood sugar and manage diabetes well, if you suffer from diabetes.
9. Safflower oil for soothing headaches and migraine
Treat migraines and headache with the help of safflower oil. This oil has the potential to eliminate pain and give comfort. You can massage the temples with the oil to reduce the intensity of the pain. If you massage your temples regularly with safflower oil, you can reduce the reoccurrence of headaches. If you experience extremely intense migraines, then you should visit the doctor and consult him/her regarding your pain.
10. Safflower oil good for congestion
Respiratory problems are common these days, with environmental pollution. The ingredients in safflower oil can treat the problems in respiratory tract, and relieve the extremely uncomfortable chest congestion. The oil can be inhaled to keep breathing problems at bay.
11. Safe to cook at high temperature
Delicate oils when overheated can create a lot of free radicals. Safflower oil, being high in oleic acid is safe to use for frying. The oil has a higher smoking point than corn oil, olive oil, sesame oil, canola oil. But never heat the polyunsaturated safflower oil, which might not be as healthy.
Drawbacks of safflower oil
Most people do not suffer from any ill effects of safflower oil, provided it is consumed in a moderate quantity. One of the side effects of safflower is that it can thin blood and slow down blood clotting in people who have any kind of bleeding disorders. People who are going for surgery or are recovering from surgery should not use safflower oil. Safflower might increase the chances of liver damage. Pregnant women should avoid safflower oil as it might cause premature liver and is a side effect of safflower oil which is quite harmful.
Taken in moderation, safflower oil has many health benefits. It should not be used daily over a long period of time, as it might increase fat content in the liver. Before using this oil, you should consult a dietician to find out the correct amount of oil that you can consume off and on.