Extracted from the safflower, production of which accelerated since the early 2000s in Turkey, safflower oil is beneficial to the body both for inside and outside thanks to the beneficial acid it contains, experts say.
Due to conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), safflower oil is helpful for losing weight and functions as a sun protector. It is also effective in curing skin blemishes and wrinkles.
The head of the Department of Industrial Crops at Selçuk University Faculty of Agriculture and head of the Safflower Foundation of Turkey, Professor Fikret Akınerdem told Anadolu Agency (AA) that safflower oil is popular worldwide.
He said that safflower being a common crop in Turkey is a great advantage for all who have health concerns and that it can be used in meals like sunflower oil and olive oil.
"I used it in preparing eggs. It has a perfect and delicious taste. I came across really positive feedback from the safflower oil users I know," he said.
As its health benefits were discovered, safflower has attracted greater attention. Studies show that safflower oil helps in losing weight by accelerating the fat-burn and disposal process.
Due to the CLA it contains, safflower oil is generally sold as a weight-loss product at places marketing dietary supplements, Akınerdem said, and added: "Safflower contains high amounts of CLA, which burns body fats. Recently a friend from the U.S. called and congratulated me about the supplementary food containing CLA. We have barely started to appreciate it. We witness its weight-loss effect. There are acquaintances of ours who lost considerable weight thanks to safflower oil. Last year, I took a call from Malatya. The person thanked me, saying that he lost 37 kilograms just by using safflower oil. The only thing she did was use safflower oil. She didn't take anything out of her diet. Before safflower oil, her metabolic rate was really low. After a while her husband also started to use it, and they are so happy now."
Akınerdem said that if it is used for weight loss, the amount should be a tablespoon, and added: "I advise people to consume it generally in the morning on an empty stomach. It can also be consumed in water, tea, yogurt or milk. They can prepare eggs for breakfast with safflower oil or mix it into soup and also by doing exercise about 15 to 20 minutes after consuming it or walking at the very least. I'm sure that they will make use of it as a weight-loss product."
In addition to its relieving effect on constipation, safflower oil also lessens the risk of developing colon cancer.
Safflower oil is also highly effective in fighting skin problems. Women may prefer it instead of make-up products. It fights skin blemishes and wrinkles without blocking pores and feeds the skin. It also can be used as a moisturizer and sun cream. It both feeds the body and functions as an exfoliator accelerating cell renewal and refreshing the skin. And lastly, it can be used for hair care. Akınerdem said: "We hope that it will also start to be used in the kitchen. I advise using it in cold-press form, but it can also be used in refined form in preparing meals."