Sunflower oil contains vitamins of groups À, D, and Å. It also contains linoleic and linolenoic non-saturated fat acids which are not synthesized in organism. These acids are called vitamin À or essential acids. Human’s demand for these acids is higher than for other vitamins. Non-saturated fat acids participate as obligatory component in formation of cell membranes and neurolemma. They have a property which allows to remove cholesterin, forming easily oxidated compound ethers with cholesterol, have normalizing effect on walls of blood vessels, and may be considered among preparations for prophylaxis of atherosclerosis, myocardial infarction, and other diseases of cardio-vascular system.
Healing properties of sunflower oil are widely used in folk medicine for treatment of thrombophlebitis, toothache, chronic diseases of stomach, intestinal tract, liver, lungs. Sunflower oil is used in cosmetic procedures, in preparation of bathing extracts, for aroma therapy.
Table 1. Composition of sunflower oil (per 100 g of product)
Oil may be obtained by two methods:
1. Pressing – mechanical pressing of oil from grinded raw material. Pressing may be cold and hot, i.e. with preheating of seeds. Cold pressing oil is the most valuable, it has distinct smell, but can not be stored for a long time.
2. Extraction – extraction of oil from raw materials with the help of organic solvents; this method is more economic, because it allows to extract oil more completely.
Oil obtained by one or another method is obligatory filtered; after filtration we obtain raw oil. After that raw oil is hydrated (treated with hot water) and neutralized. After such operations we obtain non-refined oil. Non-refined oil has a little bit smaller biological value, but can be stored for a longer period of time.