What are Cold Pressed Oil?
Oils which are used for everyday cooking and other uses are extracted from seeds, fruits, vegetables, and nuts. The way the oil is extracted directly affects the taste of the oil and its nutrient content.
When heat is used to extract oil, it does extract more of it but degrades the flavor and nutritional quality. Oils extracted in low heat have higher quality.
Cold-pressed is a technique in which the fiber is separated from a particular food item without using any amount of heat. This helps preserve the nutritive value and make the food taste better. The technique helps retain the aroma and nutritional value of the food, making it an ideal choice for cooking.
The cold-pressed oils contain natural antioxidant of seed from which they are produced.
Cold Press Process
In cold-pressing oil extraction, the seed or nut are crushed and forced out of the oil. The presses come in different sizes from small size to be used at home to large sizes to be used commercially.
There is a cylinder in which the seeds are dropped. The cylinder contains rotating screws which grind and crushes the seeds until the oil is extracted from them. There are small holes in the bottom of the cylinder through which the oil escapes into the collection container.
A little heat is generated when the screws break down the seeds but it’s not enough to damage the oil.
Different Types Of Cold-Pressed Oil And Their Benefits
- Olive Oil: It is a rich source of antioxidants which protects the cells and body tissues from free radical damage. It also has anti-cancer and anti-bacterial effects. Olive oil also contains oleic acid which gets destroyed due to the heating process. It strengthens the immune system
- Coconut Oil: Coconut oil contains lauric acid which helps protect against various infections. Lauric acid is the same acid which is present in breast milk to protect the baby against a lot of infection. It helps maintain a healthy gut. Coconut oil is suitable for cooking too as it has high heat tolerance.
- Flax Seeds Oil: This oil is extracted from flax seeds and is a rich source of polyunsaturated fatty acid such as omega3 fatty acids. It helps in reducing inflammation in the body. Flaxseed oil is also used as a laxative and for weight loss process.
- Blackcurrent Oil: This oil is extracted from the seeds of blackcurrant berries and is a rich source of GLA which is important omega-6 fatty acid. GLA is a precursor to the hormone-like substance which regulates inflammation and other body functions.
- Sesame Oil: Sesame oil is a rich source of vitamin E and is rich in antioxidant properties. It has high fatty acid content including polyunsaturated omega-6 fatty acids and monounsaturated omega-9 fatty acids. It also contains zinc, copper, calcium, iron, and vitamin B6. Sesame oil is known for its numerous cardiovascular and beauty benefits.
- Groundnut Oil: It is naturally sweet flavored edible oil. It is high in energy and has a high burning and smoking point. It contains MUFA, PUFA, vitamin A, vitamin D and vitamin E in appropriate amounts. Groundnut oil helps in lowering the bad cholesterol and maintains heart health.
- Chia Seed Oil: Chia seed oil contains 60% of omega-3 fatty acid (1). It has been used as a staple food for thousands of years to increase endurance and strength in a lot of cultures. It can be used as a massage or body oil to nourish and replenish strength.
- Hemp Seed Oil: This oil is rich in digestible protein and is also rich in omega 3 fats. Having a typical nutty flavour it has a limited shelf life. Hemp oil is a rich source of Vitamin A, Vitamin E, iron, calcium, and magnesium.
Cooking with cold-pressed oil enhances the flavor but can be tricky to cook. These oils do not react well to heat which is why they are extracted with low-heat technique. The oils containing mostly unsaturated fat, like sesame oil, degrade when heated. These oils breakdown when used in sauté or stir-fry. They work well when drizzled over finished products.
If the oils contain saturated fats such as olive oil, they can handle high temperatures of sautéing and grilling.