Palm oil, one of the most consumed and most popular oil around the world, comes from the fruit of oil palms, which are native to the coastal regions of the South-west and west Africa, where it has been for centuries.
The uses and importance of palm oil is so vast that it covers a wide range of importance both medically and spiritually but the popular and well known use of palm oil is for cooking, especially local meals like some African dishes such as; bitter leaf soup, oha soup, yam porridge and many other delicacies.
Apart from its popularity and numerous uses, palm oil contains a lot of nutritional benefits which is gotten from its high content of antioxidants such as Vitamin E, vitamin A and K. It is also a good source of calories and fat.
1. Heart Health:
According to studies, the vitamin E in palm oil can improve heart health by fighting the possibilities of heart diseases.
2. Improves Vision:
By helping to increase the absorption of Vitamin A in the body, palm oil helps in the general health of the eyes. Vitamin A, being a fat-soluble vitamin, the fat in palm oil helps the body absorb enough vitamin A.
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3. Improves Brain Function:
Palm oil contains Vitamin E in form of tocotrienols, which is an effective antioxidant for the improvement of the heart health by reducing the risk of stroke, slow dementia and prevent the growth of brain tumor.
4. Immune Booster:
The antioxidant vitamin e e g and k in palm oil helps the body fight infections and the effects of free radicals.
Palm oil is a rich source of vitamin A and E, which fight against cancer emanating cells in the body such as; breast, stomach liver, prostate and pancreas cancer.
6. Skin and Hair Nourishment:
Palm oil is a rich source of vitamins which are essential nutrients for the skin and hair beauty. Because of this benefits of palm oil to the skin and hair, it is widely used in cosmetic industries to make beauty products for both the skin and the hair. Also, the antioxidants carotene and tocotrienol in palm oil, help in protecting the skin against ultraviolet rays and reducing the risk of skin cancer.
7. Bone Health:
Palm oil is a good source of vitamin K which is an essential nutrient for regulating calcium content in the body, thereby improving the general health of the bone.
8. Improves Blood Clotting:
Through the high content of vitamin K in palm oil, the body produces a protein called prothrombin, which helps in blood clotting or coagulation.
Palm oil consumption should be in a moderate quantity or amount because too much of palm oil in the body and due to the high level of carotene in palm oil, may limit the body’s protection from ultraviolet rays.
Also, palm oil is high in saturated fat compared to other consumable oils, which can be linked to the risk of chronic heart conditions and high cholesterol level in the body. So, palm oil should not be consumed in large quantity, whether it is used for cooking or taken orally.