Macadamia oil is a vegetable oil obtained from the nut of macadamia plants such as that from the ternifolia species (Macadamia ternifolia F. Muell.).
This plant is grown in various parts of the world with the main objective of producing this oil.
Macadamia oil, despite the variability related to production methods, soil and climatic conditions, etc., is mainly composed of triglycerides with the following average distribution of fatty acids in%:
– myristic acid 1.30;
– palmitic acid 9.70;
– palmitoleic acid 26.70;
– stearic acid 2.10;
– oleic acid 48.40;
– cis-vaccenic acid 3.00;
– linoleic acid 3.40;
– α-linolenic acid 0.20;
– arachic acid 1.70;
– gadoleic acid 2.00;
– behenic acid 0.50;
– erucic acid 0.70;
– lignoceric acid 0.20.
Macadamia oil is one of the vegetable oils with the highest concentration of palmitoleic acid, a relatively rare monounsaturated fatty acid in the plant world but easily identifiable in humans and other animals. Macadamia oil is an excellent substitute for mink oil.
From a physical point of view it is a liquid oil in a natural liquid state while when refined it is light in color, luminous and amber in color with a typical greasy odor.
Macadamia oil has a high resistance to oxidation which makes it particularly suitable for frying (smoke point 210 ° C). In this sense, it represents an excellent alternative to olive oil and other oils resistant to high temperatures (peanuts, sunflower oil rich in oleic, palm oil and palm kernel). Consumed raw, due to the high presence of palmitoleic acid, Macadamia oil is instead less suitable than traditional olive oil and other seed oils.
It is also an oil that keeps well and can also be stored out of the refrigerator for two years without deteriorating.
Macadamia oil is used not only in nutrition but also in cosmetics where it is used above all as an emollient for its ability to make the skin smooth and soft.