Macadamia nut oil is one of the healthiest oils on the market. It is used increasingly by chefs and the health conscious around the world.
Chefs use macadamia nut oil as it has a wonderful flavour, is naturally healthy and extremely versatile. It can be used in a variety of ways, from frying and baked goods to salad. Its naturally clean and delicately nutty flavour enriches salad dressings and marinades, and enhances food products when using it to fry or bake.
With a smoke point of 410°F, macadamia nut oil is perfect for cooking at high temperatures, which makes it a substitute / healthier alternative to olive oil. The higher smoke point prevents degradation of the beneficial fatty acids during cooking. It is also resistant to the chemical alterations that take place when cooking at high temperatures.
Macadamia nut oil is beneficial for the nervous system and the cardiovascular parts of the body. Due to the presence of rich organic nutrient within the oil, macadamia nut oil consists of up to 85% mono-saturated fats; moreover, it has no trans-fatty acids, making it ideal for enhancing heart health, regulating body sugar and controlling diabetes.
Macadamia oil is perfect for low carbohydrate-based diets, and can even be used as a face and body moisturiser! (It has an unrefrigerated shelf life of one year.)
To stay healthy and prevent the effects of aging, we must restrict from our diet omega-6 polyunsaturated fats, such as margarine, shortenings and salad oils, which are made predominantly from corn oil, regular safflower and sunflower seed oil. Instead, we can try macadamia oil as a healthy alternative, as it contains monounsaturated fatty acid (the ‘good fat’) and very little polyunsaturated fats. There is no cholesterol in macadamia oil and research suggests that its fats are the best at reducing the level of cholesterol in the blood stream.
Facts and Figures
Natural, unrefined macadamia nut oil has:
- zero cholesterol
- perfect 1:1 ratio of omega 3 fats
- perfect fatty acid profile.
It is high in:
- omega 7 (anti-inflammatory)
- vitamins (A, B1, B2, E)
- minerals polyphones and flavonoids
- amino acids e.g. glutamine, leucine, tyrosine, alanine
- folic acid.
It contains small amounts of:
- pantothenic acid
Macadamia nut oil compares well with olive oil:
- monosaturated fat level –
macadamia nut oil: 85%, olive oil: 70%
- saturated fats –
macadamia nut oil: 12%, olive oil: 15%
The most common edible oils ranked from worst to best by percentages of omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids:
- safflower regular 77%
- sunflower regular 69%
- corn oil 61%
- soybean oil 54%
- walnut oil 51%
- sesame seed oil 41%
- peanut oil 33%
- canola oil 22%
- flaxseed oil 16%
- olive oil extra virgin 8%
- macadamia nut oil 3%.
Smoke point of unrefined oils:
- canola oil – unrefined 225°F 107°C
- safflower oil – unrefined 225°F 107°C
- sunflower oil – unrefined 225°F 107°C
- corn oil – unrefined 320°F 160°C
- peanut oil – unrefined 320°F 160°C
- olive oil – extra virgin 320°F 160°C
- butter 350°F 177°C
- olive oil (high-quality, extra virgin) 405°F 206°C
- macadamia oil – 410°F 210°C
- avocado oil – 520°F 270°C.
American Heart Association (2013). [Online] Available at: http://www.heart.org
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (2013). [Online] Available at: http://ajcn.nutrition.org
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (2013). [Online] Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov
Pescatore, F (2001). Thin For Good: The One Low-carb Diet That Will Finally Work for You. John Wiley & Sons
Schlosser, E (2001). Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal. New York: Houghton Mifflin Co.
United States Department of Agriculture (2013). [Online] Available at: http://www.usda.gov
U.S. Food and Drug Administration (2013). [Online] Available at: http://www.fda.gov/