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Information on Safflower Oil

Safflower oil is a common ingredient in numerous recipes fordifferent types of dishes and it also has certain medicinal uses. It can alsobe dangerous in certain cases as it may be affiliated with several adverseeffects. It is a vegetable oil which gets produced from the safflower plant.Safflower plant comes from the family of asteraceae and it is botanicallyreferred to as carthamus tinctorius. It is an annual herbaceous plant whichgrows up to a meter and a half in height and it can be characterized by brightorange flowers.

It is commonly cultivated primarily for the production of the vegetableoil which gets extracted from safflower seeds. The oil does not have any flavoror color and it is similar to sunflower oil when it comes to the nutritionalvalue. It can be used for cooking, salad dressing and it can also be used as anutritional supplement. It is also an integral part of certain cosmeticsproducts and it serves several medicinal purposes. It was at the peak of itspopularity in the 1960’s and it can be purchased in most well equipped foodstores.

It can be polyunsaturated or monounsaturated, depending on the initialpurpose. Polyunsaturated variety of safflower oil contains high amounts oflinoleic acid and it should not be used for cooking. It contains omega 6 fattyacids. Monounsaturated safflower oil is an excellent source of oleic acid andit is shelf stable unlike its polyunsaturated counterpart.

Safflower Oil Side Effects

There are a large number of people who are allergic tovarious plants that belong to the family of asteraceae and that include safflower plant. Various different types of allergic reactions are among themost common side effects associated with safflower oil. Mild side effects thatmay or may not be affiliated with safflower oil include nausea, back pain,vomiting, chest pain, belching, sweating, loose stools, sleepiness, diarrhea,headaches, loss of appetite, dizziness, indigestion, shivering and chills.

Mostof the aforementioned symptoms commonly disappear on their own in a matter of days. Severe side effects of safflower oil may include hyperthermia,transient increase in the liver enzymes, hyperlipemia, hypercoagulability,dyspnea, thrombocytopenia and severe chest pain. All of the aforementioned sideeffects are usually triggered by overconsumption. Sometimes safflower oil maybe responsible for increasing the risk of obesity, different cardiovasculardiseases and even non insulin dependent diabetes. Pregnant and breastfeedingwomen should not consume safflower oil.

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