- palm oil from fruit (also known as mesocarp)
- palm kernel oil from the seed (also known as kernel)
These two oils are chemically and physically different from each other with palm oil high in palmitic acid content and palm kernel oil high in lauric and myristic acid.
Health facts of palm oil
- Palm oil contains an equal proportion of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids
Saturated fatty acids
- 44% palmitic acid
- 5% stearic acid
Monounsaturated fatty acid
- 40% oleic acid
Polyunsaturated fatty acids
- 10% linoleic acid
- 0.4% alpha linolenic acid
2.Like other vegetable oils its cholestrol free.
3. For most food uses palm oil does not require hydrogenation so no trans fatty acids are formed. Palm oil without hydrogenation is an excellent oil for frying. It has lower tendency to oxidize and is resistant to the formation of polar compounds and cyclic polymers as compared to the other unsaturated oils like corn, sunflower and soyabean oils.
4. The major constituents in palm oil are carotenoids, tocopherols and tocotrienols have beneficial health properties including antioxidant, anti cancer and cholestrol lowering effects. In addition , carotenoids in the palm oil are biologically active as pro-vitamin A.
5. Besides being an excellent frying oil, it is used in making margarines, shortenings, ghee, without the need for hydrogenation. It is also an ideal raw material, being versatile, consistent in quality and economical, in the manufacture of a variety of food products.
Malaysia Palm Oilâ€™s applications in the non-food area are as varied and wide-ranging as in its food uses. Palm oil is in the formulations of soaps, detergents and other surfactants, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. Natural, biodegradable, acceptable to all religions, it is a popular base material in leading brands sold across the world and is a substantial part of the global economy.
Today, Malaysia Palm Oil assumes an even larger role in addressing significant issues â€“ the dependency of depleting fossil fuels and the growing threat of global warming. A biofuel programme that converts crude palm oil to biodiesel works towards offering the world a cleaner, eco-friendly, renewable fuel.
Indeed, the oil palm has more food and non-food uses, health and environmental benefits, and supports more economic activities and social development than any other commercial crop. Little wonder it is known as the tree of life.