Red palm oil comes from the pulp of the oil palm fruit, which grows primarily in West Africa.
Red palm oil is an intensely rich color due to the high beta-carotene content.
Red palm oil is similar to palm kernel oil. However, there is an important difference between the two.
Red palm oil is obtained from the fruit of the palm while palm kernel oil is obtained from the seeds of the palm.
Red palm oil has a neutral smell and a strong but not unpleasant taste. If you don’t like the taste, it all but disappears by the time you’re done cooking with it.
Palm oil is a regular component of cooking in West Africa, Asia & parts of Brazil.
Where I come from, we use it for cooking yam and pottage, beans, and an especially delicious dish known as egusi.
The seeds used in the preparation of egusi are from the watermelon fruit.
Here’s a quick video explaining how to make egusi. While delicious, the seeds are annoying to shell and it takes ages.
When I was a kid, every time my mum informed us we were having egusi for dinner, we’d all go ghost because that meant that was the end of an unproductive afternoon/evening.
Differences & Similarities Between Red Palm Oil & Palm Kernel Oil
- Palm kernel oil has more saturated fat content and is closer to coconut oil in structure.
- Red palm oil has a high carotene content while palm kernel oil isn’t red.
- Red palm oil and palm kernel oil are both semi-solid at room temperature.
- The cholesterol content in both is low but red palm oil is more heart-healthy.
When it comes to cooking, stick with red palm oil. The benefits for the body outweigh the benefits palm kernel oil provides.
Red Palm Oil Benefits for Health
1. High Melting Point
Red palm oil has a high melting point. This means it can withstand high heat without burning your food. It gives a nice crust to fried foods.
2. Lowers Cholesterol Levels
The good fats and vitamins contained in red palm oil can help to lower cholesterol levels, keep vitamin A levels high, maintain proper blood pressure, and improve heart health.
3. Promotes Cell Regeneration
The presence of vitamin E & L assists in the healthy regeneration of cells within the body and improved bodily functions. It also fights free radicals in the body.
4. Protects Body from Free Radical Damage
Red palm oil contains squalene and CoQ10, which helps protect the body from free radical damage and fight aging.
5. Fights Cancer
Red palm oil is the richest source of tocotrienol, a form of vitamin E that research indicates may help fight several kinds of cancers.
6. Great for Different Diets
Are you sold on red palm oil yet?
Where Can You Buy High-Quality Red Palm Oil?
You can purchase red palm oil online or at your local health store. Ensure that the brand you purchase was obtained the oil in a sustainable manner.
The next article details quick ideas and recipes for red palm oil. Do you cook with red palm oil?
Are you considering adding it to your diet? Share your thoughts in the comments section.
This post contains affiliate links which means I will make a small commission if you purchase through those links. Read full disclosure HERE.