It seems that everyone is looking for a quick way to lose weight these days, but you probably never thought about actually adding more fat to your diet in order to do so. Most of us are trying to stick to a low-fat or non-fat diet in order to cut down on calories and trim our waistline, so the idea of adding an oil to the mix might not make any sense. However, many studies suggest that safflower oil can help you lose weight, particularly the stubborn belly fat that so many of us have.
What Is Safflower Oil?
The first thing that you should know about safflower oil is that it is not a brand, but it is a type of oil that is made from the Safflower plant (Carthamus tinctorius). This plant is grown primarily for vegetable oil, and it is an annual plant with bright flowers. The ancient Egyptians and the Greeks used safflowers for a variety of products, including dyes and flower arrangements and was often made into medicine. Over the last 50 years, it has been used primarily as a source for vegetable oil and there is even a genetically modified type of safflower that actually creates insulin.
What Do You Use It For?
You can pretty much use safflower oil in place of any other vegetable oil, so it is great for frying, baking, or any kind of cooking. However, it is important to note that the safflower oil that you get on your grocery shelf for cooking is not pure safflower oil and is missing many of the nutrients that actually give you the weight loss benefits, so it is worth seeking out pure safflower oil that is not necessarily designed for cooking at high temperature.
What Nutrients Does It Contain?
Even though safflower oil is an oil and therefore a fat, it is a fine natural source for a variety of amino acids that have been proven to aid in weight loss. This kind of oil contains palmitic acid, stearic acid, oleic acid, and most importantly, linoleic acid. When safflower oil has been used in weight loss studies against traditional vegetable oils, abdominal weight loss was recorded.
The reason for this is because belly fat or the stubborn fat that you have around your waist line is known to be resistant to insulin and can cause higher blood glucose levels. Safflower oil contains linoleic acid, which helps to reverse that, allowing you to lose weight that you might not otherwise be able to lose.
When you are trying to reduce your belly fat, you will obviously need to maintain your body in a calorie deficit (eating fewer calories than you are burning), but you will also need to attack this particular area in other ways. By adding safflower oil to your diet, you will be giving your body the nutrition it needs to start using some of that fat as energy.
What Should You Look For?
When you are searching for a safflower oil, it is not enough to choose a cooking oil that contains this as an ingredient – you will want to find one that is pure safflower oil and also high in linoleic acid. Many well-known brands of safflower oil actually contain a high percentage of oleic acid (making it better for frying), but that won’t provide the same kind of health benefits. Therefore, many people choose to take their safflower oil in the form of a nutritional supplement rather than simply incorporating it into their cooking. This helps to ensure that you are getting more of the healthful benefits without having to eat food cooked in oil on a daily basis.