Sunflower seed oil is cold pressed from the seeds of the Helianthus annuus plant, the sunflower. This vibrant, sturdy and colorful flower is known worldwide. Its outer petals are yellow, red, orange or other colors. It has a circular shaped center consisting of disc florets, which mature into seeds. Sunflowers are found in tropical grasslands, forests, near highways or in everyday gardens.
Sunflower seed oil is pale yellow, in color, has very little fragrance, a light taste and light consistency. It is a versatile and healthy oil. It is used, around the world, in foods, for its frying performance and found in commercial and homemade skin care formulations!
There are three types of sunflower oil: NuSun, linoleic and high oleic. Each type differs in oleic levels offering unique properties. With three types accessible, they meet the needs of most consumer and food manufacturers.
NuSun sunflower oil provides optimum healthy benefits, great taste and superb performance. There is no need for hydrogenation, which is beneficial for the health conscious consumer. It is lower in saturated fat than linoelic sunflower oil. It contains zero trans fatty acids, has heart healthy benefits and helps to reduce LDL cholesterol levels. It is used for frying or cooking.
Linoleic sunflower oil is commonly known. It is predominantly polyunsaturated with low saturated fat levels. It contains an essential nutrient, omega-6 fatty acid. The remainder of it consists of monosaturated and low saturated fats. This natural oil is found in salad oils, margarines and shortening. It is used for cooking.
High oleic sunflower oil contains a minimum of 80%, monosaturated, oleic acid. It is trans fat-free, has excellent stability with no hydrogenation. It is used in spray cooking oils, cereals, crackers and dried fruit. It’s used for frying and in many other ways.
How is sunflower seed oil beneficial for skin? It is very conditioning, moisturizing and skin cell regenerating. It is good for dry, aged, sensitive or damaged skin. It is high in essential fatty acids. High oleic sunflower oil contains the benefits of vitamins A, B, D and E, is rich in minerals, lecithin and contains omega 9 fatty acids, essential nutrients for the body. Sunflower seed oil penetrates, quickly, without leaving an oily residue, helps skin retain moisture and can form a barrier that resists skin infection. It can be used as the primary vegetable oil in a variety of skin care formulations including homemade lotion, salt scrubs and bath oils. Combined with essential oils, in massage oil formulations, it provides aromatherapy benefits.
There is soap making information to consider before using this natural oil. When using sunflower seed oil, for making homemade soap, use in conjunction with more saturated oils. Combining sunflower seed oil with other soap making oils can help homemade soaps last longer. High oleic sunflower oil combines well with evening primrose or hemp seed oils. Use it up to, approximately, 15% to 20% in your homemade soap recipes. This, natural, soap making oil produces a soft bar of soap. It can cause your soaps to take longer to trace and harden. To reduce cost, some soap makers use it to replace a portion of olive oil, in their homemade soap recipes.
The shelf life of sunflower seed oil is, approximately, six months to one year. The high oleic sunflower oil is, naturally, more stable, resistant to rancidity and can last longer. Sunflower seed oil offers healthful benefits and is used in a variety of ways!