Among the many crops grown in the United States is cotton. Roughly 60 percent of what is harvested from a cotton field by weight is cottonseed. The cottonseed oil form is a common ingredient in many processed foods and animal feed. Cottonseed oil ranks as one of the top cooking oils in the United States, but I would not recommend it as part of your diet. Before I discuss my stand, here is what mainstream recommendations have to say about this vegetable oil.
What Is Cottonseed Oil?
Cottonseed oil is among the most common vegetable oils used in the US. Referred to as “America’s original vegetable oil,” it has been a part of the American diet since the 1800s and has been in high demand among consumers since then. Cottonseed oil is said to be low in trans fat, which, according to its supporters, makes it a healthful option. It is similar to canola, corn, safflower, soybean, and sunflower in terms of its unsaturated fat oil composition.
Uses of Cottonseed Oil
This vegetable oil is frequently used for frying, deep-frying, and baking. Because of its neutral taste, cottonseed oil is said to enhance the natural taste of food, unlike other oils.
Cottonseed oil is a familiar feature of processed foods, which I absolutely recommend you avoid if you want to achieve true health. It’s a popular ingredient in margarines, icings, and whipped toppings, because it helps form beta prime crystal, which promotes the ideal texture and creamy appearance of shortenings, spreads, and similar products. Cottonseed oil is also added to salads.
Other processed foods that use cottonseed oil as an ingredient include potato chips and French fries, baked goods, cereals, mayonnaise, stir-friend and oriental dishes, and spicy foods.
Cottonseed oil is also used in personal care products such as soap and cosmetics. Soap produced with cottonseed oil was found to be adapted to washing wool. The oil from cottonseed is also added to laundry detergents.Other products where cottonseed oil is used range from rubber to insecticides and explosives.
Unrefined cottonseed oil was once used in medicine to treat colic in babies. However, it contained a substance called gossypol, a toxic one that can only be metabolized by cows and other livestock.
Composition of Cottonseed Oil
Cottonseed oil is mainly polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA), and linoleic acid makes up a majority of its PUFA content.The fatty acid composition of cottonseed oil is:
•Saturated fat — 27 percent
•Monounsaturated fat — 18 percent
•Polyunsaturated fat — 55 percent
When hydrogenated, cottonseed oil’s fatty acid profile is altered and its monounsaturated fatty acid (MUFA) concentrations increase:
•Saturated fat — 29 percent
•Monounsaturated fat — 50 percent
•Polyunsaturated fat — 21 percent
Fatty acids that can be found in cottonseed oil include palmitic acid, myristic acid, palmitoleic acid, stearic acid, oleic acid, linoleic acid, and linolenic acid.