There is a great deal of concern about the environmental impacts of manufacturing pharmaceuticals and cosmetics, and most companies make an effort to reduce the impact. The problem that many people run into is that there are not as many preservatives in plant oils and other vegetable oils as there are in nut oils and animal fats. There are also fewer plant sterols and essential oils.
Also Called Preservatives play a vital role in maintaining the chemical balance of your vitamin or mineral supplement. Vitamins, minerals, and other supplements are formulated to work in tandem with each other and to provide you with the nutrients that you need to maintain health. These nutritional components do not ‘take’ in their own preservatives. In order for them to work properly and to be effective, the proper preservatives must be included. The best type of preservatives – plant-based ones – are very different from one another and have different purposes as well.
Plant-based preservatives include essential fatty acids, vitamin E, vitamin C, and mineral oil. Some of these substances are more prevalent in plant oils than others, which is why they are not used in human nutrition. Essential fatty acids are the fat-soluble component of oils, and they are found in such things as olive oil, sunflower oil, sesame oil, and palm oil. This is because essential fatty acids are petroleum-based. Mineral oil is generally not considered to be a preservative, and instead works like a moisturizer to lock moisture into your skin.
Plant sterols, or vegetable oils, are different. While some plant oils contain acid ester molecules that create a low level of stability, others are lipid esters that create much higher levels of stability – which makes them more stable than the lipid-based oils. Plant sterols are usually not used in food, but they do have applications in cosmetics. Mineral oil is very similar.
Plant oils are not the only types of essential fatty acids that work as preservatives. Some plant fats and lipids have vitamin E attached to them, which is a very stable substance. It is commonly included in shampoos and conditioners, though it is not generally recommended as a preservative for foods. Essential fatty acid preservatives can be found in many plant oils, though the most common are linolenic and stearic acids. Oils with these compounds are not generally recommended for cooking, but some manufacturers add them to moisturizers because of the stability they offer.
If you do choose to use some type of oil preservatives, remember that there are a number of excellent natural preservatives available. A number of plant oils, minerals, vitamins and herbs can stand up to high temperatures and have been used for thousands of years to preserve foods. Some of these natural oils are more expensive than others, but you will find affordable ones if you look around. Make sure you read the label and that you are choosing an all-natural product.