There’s no doubt that corn is one of the world’s most a-maize-ing crops! It has so many uses that benefit people all around the world. Over the next few weeks, we will feature a new blog series called, “For the Love of Corn”, where we will look at the six different high-value corn product categories and how they are used.
This week, we will take a look at the high-value corn product category, Corn Oil. Corn oil is a consumer favorite and an extremely beneficial ingredient to the food industry. By removing free fatty acids and phospholipids from crude corn oil, the oil refining process gives corn oil qualities consumers value most:
- Excellent frying quality
- Exceptional resistance to smoking or discoloration.
There’s no doubt that corn oil is highly regarded by consumers for its functionality, exceptional flavor, great prices, and health benefits. It is a concentrated source of energy, is very digestible, provides essential fatty acids and Vitamin E, and is a rich source of polyunsaturated fatty acids. To look into these further, below is a quick description of some key health benefits corn oil provides:
Corn oil is an effective component in lowering blood cholesterol levels, as it offers high levels of polyunsaturated fats instead of saturated fats. Polyunsaturated fats lower blood cholesterol levels, while saturated fats are approximately twice as powerful in raising cholesterol levels as polyunsaturated fats are in lowering them. In fact, the Food and Drug Administration has acknowledged the unsaturated fat benefits of corn oil in reducing the risk of heart disease.
Numerous human studies show that diets enriched in polyunsaturated fatty acids can significantly lower elevated blood pressure in individuals with high blood pressure. Corn oil was used in many of these studies. Corn oil diets have shown blood pressure lowering of about 12% in men and 5% in women who had elevated blood pressure.
Essential Fatty Acids:
Corn oil is a rich source of linoleic acid, which is one of two essential acids necessary for growth and good skin and hair quality. Linoleic acid is labeled "essential" because it cannot be synthesized by the body and must be supplied in the diet.
Corn oil is also recognized as an excellent source of tocopherols. Tocopherols function as antioxidants and provide a good source of Vitamin E. The antioxidant activity of tocopherols are important in health terms; and also in terms of quality of the product as it helps retard development of rancidity.
Learn more about the health benefits of corn oil by clicking here.
Corn oil has made an impact in the food industry. It has replaced a significant amount of saturated fats in numerous food products and is a top choice for trans-fat reduction. In addition to snack food applications, corn oil is also an effective component in reducing trans-fats in restaurant settings.
Want to learn more about corn oil and how it’s made? Click here.