Indian kitchens are full of amazing ingredients whose uses extend beyond fulfilling your culinary needs. One such staple ingredient is mustard, a tiny black seed with a pungent flavour! When pressed hard, these seeds release a thick and aromatic oil called Mustard (Rai) Oil, which turns any dish into a flavour bomb! Also called Sarson ka tel in Hindi, mustard oil works as a holy grail to your skin by offering some unbelievable health and cosmetic benefits. From helping us fight infections to promoting healthy hair growth, you must know about these 8 Mustard Oil benefits for health, hair and skin.
Mustard Oil Nutritional Benefits:
Here is the breakdown of the nutritional profile of mustard oil per 100gm serving:
Total Calories – 884
- Total Fat – 100gm
- Saturated Fat – 11.6gm
- Monounsaturated Fat – 59.2gm
- Polyunsaturated Fat – 21.2 gm
Good Benefits of Mustard Oil for Health, Hair and Skin:
In many countries like India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, Mustard oil is used for cooking purposes. It is considered to be a healthy oil due to its high smoke point, which releases less free radicals than other oils. There are many other advantages of mustard oil (Sarso Oil) which shall be discussed below:
Mustard Oil Health Benefits:
Here are 4 benefits that Mustard oil is good for health. Let’s look at them.
1. May Offer Pain Relief:
It is a common practice in many countries to use yellow mustard oil to massage the body. Many people believe that doing so offers quick relief from sore muscles and painful conditions like arthritis. One study supports this belief by showing that Allyl isothiocyanate present in mustard oil may alleviate pain with its anti-inflammatory properties (1). Also, the omega-3 fatty acids present in this oil reduced the need for painkillers in patients with Rheumatoid arthritis. (2)
2. May Fight Pathogens:
Mustard oil has powerful anti-microbial properties to inhibit the growth of different types of pathogens. According to a study, the benefits of adding white mustard oil to certain foods showed reduced growth of food spoiling bacteria like E.Coli, Lactobacillus, Salmonella etc. and thereby reduce the chances of food-related infections(3). Additionally, Glucosinolates present in mustard oil were effective in controlling fungal moulds on food to increase its shelf life (4).
Read: Mustard Oil Ill Effects
3. May Inhibit Cancer Cell Growth:
A few scientific studies show that Mustard oil may slow down the spread of cancerous cells and reduce the risk of mortality. One particular study reveals that mustard seeds contain a compound called Allyl isothiocyanate, which inhibited bladder cancer cell growth in rats by 34.5 %, along with preventing muscle invasion by 100% (5). However, its effects on different types of Cancers in humans is still under study.
4. Mustard Oil Good For Heart:
The mustard seed oil contains about 59.2 gms of Monounsaturated fats and 21.2 gms of Polyunsaturated fats. Studies show that consuming foods that are rich in these fatty acids as compared to eating food high in saturated fats can decrease the risk of heart problems and diabetes (6). These agents elevate the HDL levels while reducing triacylglycerols which cause valve thickening and heart strokes.
Mustard Oil Benefits For Skin:
Here we enlisted the 3 best mustard oil benefits for the skin. Let’s have a look at them.
5. Acts as a Protective Barrier on Skin:
Mustard oil works like a natural emollient that acts as a protective barrier for your skin. A study conducted in Nepal shows that neonatal who received a mustard oil massage showed better strength of skin barrier and reduced water loss than those who did not (7). This is why many people prefer a massage with Sarson ka tel in winter to prevent their skin from cracks and dryness.
6. Mustard Oil for Skin Infections:
Mustard oil contains many powerful anti-microbial compounds like Glucosinolate, Isothiocyanate etc., which can reduce the risk of skin infections like eczema (8). It is also known that Mustard oil may offer benefits like soothing relief from itchy and inflammatory skin conditions with its emollient nature.
7. Mustard Oil Increases Blood Circulation:
A good massage with mustard oil on your skin can increase blood circulation and give it a healthy glow. Mustard oil adds warmth to your body and gives you a soothing relief from itchiness, body pain and flakiness in winters.
Mustard Oil Benefits For Hair:
Here we enlisted one benefit mustard oil is good for hair. Let’s have a look at them.
8. Mustard Oil is Good for Hair Growth:
Although studies are limited, it is known that mustard oil may prove beneficial to the health of hair and scalp. The anti-microbial agents in mustard oil may prevent problems like dandruff, eczema etc., while the omega-3 fatty acids may reduce scalp inflammation. Massaging the scalp with warm mustard oil may promote good circulation to the hair follicles and strengthen them from within.
Mustard Oil Side Effects:
Though Mustard oil usage has benefits, it is not safe for everyone in general. It may trigger allergic reactions in people with sensitive skin, along with causing certain side effects when consumed internally. Here are some of the possible risks associated with this ingredient:
- Mustard oil contains a high level of Erucic acid which may be dangerous to the body in the longer run.
- It May increases the risk of Dropsy, an fluid retention issue in soft tissues when used as cooking oil.
- May irritate the gastrointestinal layer.
- It May cause skin blisters and rashes.
- It May cause allergic rhinitis.
- May affect fetal development in pregnant women.
Mustard oil is a popular cooking oil in the Northern states of India. While it does come with a set of mustard oil health benefits, the side effects cannot be ignored too! So, limit its consumption and watch out for any adverse reactions it might cause internally or externally.