Sick and tired of the usual unhealthy-saturated oils sold in markets? Then why not switch to a more edible, flavourful, and healthy oil such as sesame seed oil. It may come as a shock, but there are ample health benefits of sesame oil. It’s most commonly used in South Asian and Middle Eastern cuisines. Sesame oil is extracted from sesame seeds, which is often used as toppings on various dishes. It is believed to improve mental and physical health. Believe it or not, sesame seed oil is also typically consumed as a popular alternative medication for certain health conditions. It is also used in traditional massages and is common in the cosmetic industry. Now that I’ve piqued your curiosity about sesame oil let’s dive into all its benefits!
- Sesame Seed Oil Nutrition Facts
- High in Unsaturated Fats
- Helps in Blood Production & Arthritis
- High in Antioxidants & A Natural Anti-inflammatory Agent
- Helps Control Diabetes
- Great for Skin & Oral Health
- Fights Depression & Stress
- Sesame Oil Substitutes
But! Before we delve into it, let’s check out some sesame seed oil nutrition facts. And what actually makes it so special?
The reason why sesame seed oil is popular is because of its low-fat content. It’s not like your everyday-oil that’s filled with saturated fatty acids. One tablespoon (13.6g) of Sesame seed oil contains 120.2 calories, with high contents of unsaturated fat of around 5.4g and 1.9g of saturated fats. It is rich in linoleic acid and oleic acid. And it contains 1% choline. Plus, it has significant traces of vitamin E (0.2mg), vitamin K (1.8μg), calcium, zinc, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, and manganese. The oil does not have many carbohydrates, proteins, and fiber and is just mostly high on the good stuff, i.e., minerals, vitamins, and the healthy kind of fats.
Now, let’s unravel some of the sesame oil health benefits!
High in Unsaturated Fats
As mentioned above, sesame seed oil contains a low amount of saturated fats and is high on unsaturated fats. It is particularly rich in omega-6 fatty acids, which are polyunsaturated fatty acids. These are essentially good for your diet and heart. Due to the high amount of healthy fats it contains, sesame oil helps prevent cardiovascular conditions like high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes, and narrowing of arteries (also known as atherosclerosis). It also helps lower blood cholesterol levels by significantly reducing the amount of LDL (low-density lipoproteins), which is considered to be “bad” cholesterol and triglycerides in the body.
Helps in Blood Production & Arthritis
One of sesame seed oil benefits is that it is loaded with vitamins and minerals. It has a fine amount of zinc, magnesium, calcium, iron, and copper. While extracting the oil from sesame seeds, some of these nutrients are lost, but not all of it! The zinc and copper content is mainly retained. The zinc and iron help in red blood cell (RBC) production, it improves blood circulation and helps improve the body’s metabolism. It can also reduce the risks of becoming anemic. Sesame seeds oil is mainly popular for its copper ion contents and its contributions to rheumatoid arthritis. Copper is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and widely used in medicines as an anti-inflammatory agent, due to which sesame oil consumption can lessen the rheumatoid arthritis pain, reduce swelling joints, and strengthen the bones.
High in Antioxidants & A Natural Anti-inflammatory Agent
Another benefit of sesame seeds oil consumption is that it contains two powerful antioxidants called sesamol and sesaminol. These two agents have a great effect on the body and help get rid of free radicals that can damage body cells. They prevent the accumulation of free radicals, which in turn reduces inflammation and diseases. It’s also healthy to use this in your diet, especially when you have infections like foot fungus. Along with some essential oils for nail fungus, adding sesame oil in your diet can strengthen your body against a myriad of minor infections. The other property of sesame oil is its anti-inflammatory abilities. Sesame oil has the ability to reduce the release of inflammatory markers as it acts as an anti-inflammatory agent, which makes it a great healing agent. In some cultures, such as in the Taiwanese culture, sesame oil has been used to treat joint pain, scrapes, and toothaches. Its antibacterial properties are effective against various types of bacteria, such as streptococcus, staphylococcus, and athlete’s foot fungus. If you are looking to protect your body against UTIs, sesame oil and apple cider vinegar for UTI prevention can be effective.
Helps Control Diabetes
If you have diabetes and are looking for ways to control your sugar level, then it’s best to switch to sesame oil. Sesame seed oil helps regulate the glucose level in the blood. It is an excellent source of magnesium ions, along with other various nutrients. All these nutrients work together to lower the sugar levels significantly. And to control their blood sugar levels, diabetic patients are usually advised to incorporate sesame oil in their cooking and daily food intake.
Great for Skin & Oral Health
Applying sesame seed oil and massaging it into the skin, daily, is a great way to keep the skin fresh and healthy! The nutrients in sesame oil are absorbed into the skin and inhibit inflammation and any bacterial growth on skin. It acts as a moisturiser and has anti-aging properties. Sesame seeds oil promotes the regeneration of new skin as old skin cells shed off. It also protects the skin from harmful UV rays, and this is mainly due to its antioxidant properties. It is considered to be a natural sunscreen, protecting your skin from sunburns, skin damage, and potential skin cancers. The antioxidants present in sesame oil absorbs all the water-soluble toxins from the surface of the skin, hence, detoxifying the skin. I’m gonna let you in on a great beauty hack using sesame seeds oil. Wash your face regularly with a mixture of ½ cup sesame oil, ½ cup apple cider vinegar, and ¼ cup water. This will detoxify your skin and leave your skin glowing for weeks!
Another fascinating and exciting fact of sesame seeds oil is it improves oral health. The use of this oil is commonly found in Ayurvedic medicines and treatments. It is believed to treat bleeding gums, dry mouth, prevent tooth decay, and remove plaque. A traditional practice in Ayurvedic medicines is swishing 1 to 2 tablespoon of sesame oil in the mouth for 20 minutes, every morning on an empty stomach, and then directly spitting it out. This helps keep the teeth, gums, and jaw healthy as it removes all the toxins from the body.
Fights Depression & Stress
An amino acid called tyrosine is found in sesame seeds oil. Tyrosine has a direct impact on a neurotransmitter known as Serotonin. This neurotransmitter affects our mood and acts as a mood booster and keeps you feeling light and positive. Several experts have concluded that incorporating sesame oil in diet can increase the level of Serotonin and its activity, keeping you away from stress.
Sesame Oil Substitutes
So far, we have discussed all of sesame seed oil benefits; however, there is a chance of one becoming allergic to it, and over-consumption can lead to server side-effects. Hence, it’s best to take the oil in proper dosage and try your best to not over-do it, as delicious as it may be, drizzling more than your standard requirement sesame oil can be harmful. It can lead to an increase in body weight, colon cancer, or diverticulitis.
And for those of you who may be allergic to sesame oil, I assure you, many other suitable alternatives can still provide you with the same distinctive nutty taste along with all the health benefits of the oil. Hummus makes for an awesome mayonnaise substitute, and one of the main components of hummus is Tahini sauce that is entirely made up of sesame seeds and its oil. Likewise, some of the best substitutes of sesame oil include:
- Avocado oil
- Canola oil
- Olive oil
- Peanut oil
- Walnut oil
- Perilla oil
- Toasted sesame oil or dark sesame seeds oil
The bottom line here is, Auraat believes that sesame seed oil holds many health benefits and can be used to whip up quick and easy dressings for salads or in cooking unique dishes. It’s beneficial to the heart, joints, bones, teeth, skin, and more, there is still plenty of room to dig deeper and investigate the potentials of sesame seed oil. Consider adding sesame oil to your diet, and you’ll see a healthy change to your life.
Stay safe, stay healthy, and try out some sesame oil!