Health Benefits of Almond Oil

Almonds contain various health benefits, but almond oil is often less frequently used. That said, the oil can be used in cooking and as part of your beauty routine to moisturize your hair and skin. 

A plant-based, heart-healthy oil that contains monounsaturated fats and vitamin E, almond oil is often added to many beauty products for the hair and skin and can be bought as a cooking oil.

Health Benefits

The vitamins and antioxidants in almond oil can provide essential health benefits. For example, the antioxidant vitamin E helps protect cells from excessive free radicals. Having too many free radicals can cause oxidative stress, which has been linked to the development of some chronic and degenerative illnesses like rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, heart disease, and cardiovascular disease.

Almond oil also can provide other benefits like:

Heart Health

The monounsaturated fats in almond oil are heart-healthy and a good substitute for oils high in saturated fat. Monounsaturated fats can help reduce the amount of “bad” LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol, helping your cardiovascular system and heart. 

The vitamin E in almond oil also helps support heart and cardiovascular health by reducing the oxidation of LDL cholesterol. 

Blood Sugar Levels

Studies suggest that oils rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, like almond oil, may help with blood sugar control in people with type 2 diabetes. One study found that participants who ate almond oil with breakfast had lower blood sugar levels after eating and throughout the day than those who didn’t eat almond oil. Additionally, they weren’t as hungry after eating, which resulted in them eating less throughout the day.

Skin and Hair

Almond oil’s moisturizing properties can help soothe your skin and relieve itching. Research suggests that topically applying almond oil in a cream can help ease symptoms of eczema and dermatitis. Almond oil may also improve skin’s complexion and tone.

Almond oil may also help moisturize and strengthen your hair and scalp, although more research is needed. It may help tame frizz and moisture and heal dry hair. Almond oil may also help relieve symptoms of dry, itchy scalp.   

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Nutrition

Almond oil is rich in vitamin E and antioxidants, which can help your hair and skin, and may lower your risk of certain cancers, cardiovascular disease, and heart disease.

It’s also an excellent source of:

  • Magnesium
  • Phosphorus
  • Copper 

Nutrients per Serving

A 1-tablespoon serving of almond oil contains:

Portion Sizes

Almond oil is a useful ingredient, but it’s still high in fat and calories, so you should moderate your portions. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends healthy adults get about 20 to 35 percent of their energy from dietary fats. 

Almond oil can be a good choice since it’s low in saturated fats and has no trans fats. It primarily contains monounsaturated fats that are heart-healthy and may help increase your HDL or “good” cholesterol.

How to Prepare Almond Oil

Almond oil has a mild, nutty taste that can be a pleasant addition to your foods. Unrefined almond oil works well as a finishing oil that you add to your dish after cooking is completed since it doesn’t have a high smoke point. 

You can use refined almond oil for cooking techniques like sautéing and roasting. However, refined almond oil may not contain as many natural nutrients, as the exposure to high heat during the refinement process can destroy nutrients. If you have a nut allergy, you may want to avoid almond oil.  

You can also incorporate almond oil into your beauty routine. It’s a natural, non-toxic substance that’s used in many over-the-counter beauty products. You can rub a small amount into your skin, scalp, or frizzy hair. You can also use it as a carrier oil if you use essential oils.

Here are some ways to use unrefined and refined almond oil in recipes:

  • Drizzle a little unrefined almond oil over pasta to increase healthy fats and flavor.
  • Use unrefined almond oil as the base for homemade salad dressings by combining with herbs and apple cider vinegar.
  • Use it as a dipping oil for bread.
  • Use refined almond oil to stir-fry or sauté vegetables, which can add a nutty flavor to your dish.
WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Dan Brennan, MD on November 07, 2020

Sources

SOURCES:

Canadian Medical Association Journal: “Adding monounsaturated fatty acids to a dietary portfolio of cholesterol-lowering foods in hypercholesterolemia.”

Cleveland Clinic: “Heart-Healthy Oils.”

Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice: “The uses and properties of almond oil.”

Current Opinion in Cardiology: “The role of antioxidants in preventive cardiology.”

ESHA Research, Inc., Salem, Oregon: “Oil, almond, refined, Spectrum Naturals.”

International Journal of Biomedical Science: “Free Radicals, Antioxidants in Disease and Health.”

International Journal of Molecular Sciences: “Anti-Inflammatory and Skin Barrier Repair Effects of Topical Application of Some Plant Oils.”

Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: “Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Dietary Fatty Acids for Healthy Adults.”

Journal of the American College of Nutrition: “Almond consumption and cardiovascular risk factors in adults with prediabetes.”

Journal of Drugs in Dermatology: “The Use of an Over-the-Counter Hand Cream With Sweet Almond Oil for the Treatment of Hand Dermatitis.”

Nutrition & Metabolism: “Acute and second-meal effects of almond form in impaired glucose tolerant adults: a randomized crossover trial.”

Nutrition & Metabolism: “Control of blood glucose in type 2 diabetes without weight loss by modification of diet composition.”

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