Palm Nuts

Palm oil is an extremely useful vegetable oil that is derived from the various pulp of the fruit of oil palms.

The main varieties that are used in the production of palm oil are African oil palm (Elaeis guineensis) and American oil palm (Elaeis oleifera). Palm oil is naturally reddish-orange in color because of its high beta-carotene content. It is also one of the very few naturally saturated vegetable fats that increase the LDL cholesterol levels in a person’s body.

Palm oil is commonly used as cooking oil in Africa, Southeast Asia, and certain countries in South America. It has become more popular in other parts of the world in recent years because of the health concerns of having too many trans fats in the diet.

 

 

HEALTH BENEFITS OF PALM OIL

There are a number of health benefits associated with palm oil. Let us discuss them in detail below.

Improves Energy Levels

Beta-carotene is one of the prime components of palm oil which is very good for improving energy levels and boosting hormonal balance in the body.

Improves Vision

Beta-carotene is extremely important for improving vision. Many antioxidants can be found in palm oil, which are the powerful defensive mechanisms of the body. They are the beneficial by-products of cellular metabolism and can protect the body from free radicals. Free radicals are responsible for a lot of cellular breakdown and mutation, including the damage that can cause vision issues. Using palm oil as a replacement for other types of oil can help prevent macular degeneration and cataracts.

Prevents Cardiovascular Issues

Palm oil has a high content of HDL and LDL cholesterol, but even though one is good (HDL) and the other is bad (LDL), it can still create a healthier balance in your body. High levels of LDL cholesterol can increase your chances of atherosclerosis, which can cause strokes and heart attacks. By maintaining a healthy balance of cholesterol (both of which you need in your body), you can ensure a healthier cardiovascular system.

Reduces Risk of Cancer

Tocopherols, a form of vitamin E, are natural antioxidants that can help prevent cancer by neutralizing free radicals. Free radicals cause healthy cells to mutate into cancerous cells, so high levels of tocopherol in palm oil are necessary.

Supports Healthy Pregnancy

Vitamin deficiencies are some of the most dangerous conditions that are faced by pregnant women and their unborn children. Vitamin A, D, and E are found in considerable quantities in palm oil, and since the body cannot naturally retain these vitamins, it is necessary to consume them in our diets. Thus, adding palm oil to the diet will ensure no occurrence of any vitamin deficiencies.

Skin Nutrition

Vitamin E, synthetic or natural, is widely used in the cosmetic/personal care industry. The main reason for the use of vitamin E was for its antioxidant properties in the protection of skin against the onslaught of free radicals or oxidative stress caused by chemical insult and UV rays in our daily atmosphere. Most of the vitamin E used in cosmetic is mainly of the tocopherol form (synthetic and natural forms).

Fueled by the many recent scientific publications on the benefits of tocotrienols in cosmetic application and women's health, the use of tocotrienols has been gaining tremendous attention in the oral and topical cosmetic and personal care industry. Exciting science and research are being conducted on tocotrienol for its superior protection of skin and skin aging compared to tocopherol as well as the skin’s first line of defense against free radicals.

Dr. Nicholas Perricone, dermatologist at the Yale Medical Center, in his New York Times' best-selling book, "The Wrinkle Cure," advocated the use of tocotrienols in cream to promote skin health and prevent skin aging.

The research on tocotrienols in the protection of skin has been fairly new, i.e., less than 15 years. More research is currently being conducted either by companies or universities to understand and evaluate the efficacy of tocotrienols in skin protection and skin nourishment. Scientists believe tocotrienols play a major and important role in the protection of the skin, especially in the prevention of oxidative stress and skin anti-aging and wound-healing.

Natural Food Color

Palm fruit carotenoids are widely used in the fat- and dairy-processing industry to standardize the color of margarine, butter and ghee. They are also widely used as a natural colorant in confectionery and convenience foods; and to replace synthetic colorants in the beverage industry. The trend, especially in Europe, the United States and Japan, is moving toward replacing synthetic with natural colorants.

Potent Antioxidant

Carotenoids are potent antioxidants. Professor Lester Packer of the University California Berkeley showed alpha-carotene is a more potent antioxidant than beta-carotene.

Red palm oil is rich in natural phytonutrients that are important for health. These phytonutrients (i.e.: tocotrienols and carotenes) are also powerful antioxidants that help maintain the stability of the oil during cooking process and may extend the shelf life of food prepared with red palm oil.

Numerous scientific studies have shown how tocotrienols and carotenoids work in supporting important health conditions, especially in supporting brain and heart health, liver health as well as skin nutrition. However, in all these research, a common and important thread for positive effects has been the naturally-attained full spectrum tocotrienols or carotenoids complex. There have been negative studies for both vitamin E (i.e.: alpha-tocopherol) and beta-carotene in the past, due to the fact that those studies only used a single form (isomer) of the nutrient. The market is moving towards taking what nature produces as a wholesome complex of ingredients, naturally found in our diet as opposed to a single ingredient formulation. Therefore, it is important to use what nature produces as the combination of nutrients naturally found in red palm oil work synergistically to confer the optimum functionality and health benefits.

 

PALM NUTS SOUP RECIPE

Ingredients

Palm nut paste, 200g of crabs, 300g of smoked cat fish, 500g of beef, 10ml of  salt, 1-2 liters of  water, 2 medium size onions(chopped), 2 cloves of  garlic(crushed), 200g of  fresh tomatoes, 20ml tomato puree, 1 medium size ginger( crushed),  3 dried bay leaves and 100g of okra

PREPARATIONS

In a large saucepan steam beef, fish and crabs with chopped onions, garlic, tomato puree and salt about 10minutes

Add chilli powder, ginger. Simmer for about 10 minutes

Mix palm nut paste with water, add the palm nut mixture, fresh tomatoes and okro to the meat.

Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and cook for at least an hour. (Blend fresh tomatoes after half an hour).

Stir consistently to prevent soup form scorching. Serve with fufu, kenkey, yam or rice.

 

WORD OF CAUTION

High in Calories and Fat

A 1-tablespoon serving of palm oil has 120 calories, while the same serving size of palm kernel oil has 117 calories. Both types of oil have 13.6 grams of fat per serving. The U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends no more than 5 to 7 teaspoons of oil per day, including oils that are naturally found in foods, such as in nuts and seeds. The American Heart Association recommends that no more than 25 to 35 percent of your daily calories come from fats including all oils, fats found in food and solid fats such as butter. For someone on a 2,000-calorie-per-day diet, this is between 50 and 70 grams of fat per day.

Could Increase Cholesterol Levels

Avoid intake of palm oil if you have high LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) levels in your body.

While neither palm nor palm kernel oil contain any dietary cholesterol, a diet high in saturated fat increases your risk of heart disease as it encourages the buildup of plaque in your arterial walls. Each tablespoon of palm oil contains 7 grams of saturated fat, that’s almost half the daily limit in a 2,000-calorie diet. If you're consuming palm oil in addition to other saturated fat sources like dairy, meat and processed foods -- you might exceed your limit.

Can Cause Weight Gain

Palm oil naturally contains palmitic acid, a fatty acid that may increase your chances of weight gain and obesity. A 2005 issue of the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition" included a study on the overall effects of a diet high in palmitic acid in healthy young adults. The study found that an increase in palmitic acid intake led to lower fat oxidation rates and a decrease in metabolism.

As a result, researchers concluded that a diet high in palmitic acid may increase the chances of obesity and insulin resistance.

 

Source:

http://www.foodathlete.com/main/nutrition/234/palmnuts.html

http://www.naturalproductsinsider.com/articles/2013/03/health-benefits-of-red-palm-oil.aspx

http://www.livestrong.com/article/132886-adverse-effects-palm-oil/

https://esimpeh.wordpress.com/?s=abenkwan

 

Last modified on Tuesday, 19 December 2017 19:21