Safflower Oil : Preparation, Properties, Standards, Synonyms, Chemical Constituents and Uses

Safflower Flower Uses

Safflower Flower Uses

Morphology and Distribution of Safflower Oil:

Safflower oil is a fixed oil obtained from the ripe and dry seeds of Carthamus tinctorius, belonging to the family Compositae. Safflower is one of the most ancient crops which yields dye. Safflower is mostly cultivated in Egypt as a dye-yielding herb and as an oil seed plant in countries like USSR, India, Mexico, USA, Ethiopia and Australia. It is regarded as a substitute for sunflower.

Preparation of Safflower Oil:

The seeds from the selected varieties of the safflower plants like A-300, S-7-13-3 are selected for the expression of the oil. The seeds are selected, cleaned and processed further. 1000 seeds of the safflower weigh about 20 to 50 g. 35 to 38% of the fixed oil is present in the seeds. The processing of the oil is done by the expression method in the expellers or with the help of hydraulic presses. This expressed oil is filtered and purified further. The seed meal or round seeds are cooked with the aid of open steam so that maximum oil can be yielded and collected. The filtered and decolourised oil is packed into suitable containers.

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Properties of the safflower oil:

Safflower oil is a clear, faint yellowish liquid with characteristic odour and taste. The oil on exposure to air becomes thickened and rancid. It is slightly soluble in alcohol and is freely soluble in benzene, chloroform, ether and petroleum-ether.

Medicinal Uses of Safflower Oil

Medicinal Uses of Safflower Oil

Standards of the safflower oil:

  • Acid Value : 1 – 9
  • Hydroxyl Value : 2.9 – 6.0
  • Iodine Value : 140 – 150
  • Refractive Index : 1.472 – 1.475
  • Saponification Value : 188 – 194
  • Specific Gravity : 0.9211 – 0.9215
  • Thiocyanogen Value : 82.5 – 86
  • Unsaponifiable fraction : not less than 1.5
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Chemical Constituents of Safflower Oil:

Safflower oil contains glycerides of palmitic acid, stearic acid, arachidic acid, oleic acid, linoleic acid and linolenic acid. It contains major amount of polyunsaturated fatty acids, which is responsible for controlling the level of cholesterol in blood and for reducing the incidence of heart attacks.

Uses of Safflower Oil:

  • Safflower Oil is used as an edible oil
  • The edible safflower oil is used in the manufacturing of oleomargarine
  • Safflower Oil is used as a dietary supplement in hypercholesteremia
  • Safflower Oil is used in the treatment of atherosclerosis
  • Safflower Oil is used for the preparation of vegetable ghee due to high amount of linoleic acid
  • Safflower Oil is used in the industries for the preparation of soft-soap vanishes, linoleum and water proofing material
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Synonyms of Safflower Oil:

  • Bengali – Kusum, kajireh
  • Gujarati – Kusurubi, kasauibi kabri
  • Hindi – Kusum, kajireh
  • Malayalam – Chendurakam
  • Marathi – Kardai, kusumba
  • Sanskrit – Kammalottara, kusumba
  • Tamil – Senderukam, khusumbaniraj
  • Telugu – Ayni-sikha, kusumbher
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