Please read: Diet rumors in 2012 (I): Prawns + vitamin C= eating poison?
Diet rumors in 2012 (II): Instant noodles contain poisons hard to decompose
Diet rumors in 2012 (III): will mixed drinks cause chronic diseases?
Diet rumors in 2012 (IV): Fresh-baked bread causes cancer?
Diet rumors in 2012 (V): Should women and children eat less chicken wings?
A kind of edible oil is produced by chemical extraction processes, which produces two kinds of cancer causing substances: residues of lead and mercury and trans-fatty acids. The n-hexane (C6H14), as an extraction solvent used in the process, is a neurotoxin, which is particularly dangerous to human health.
The truth is:
There are two major ways for edible oil extraction: pressing extraction and solvent extraction.
Because of the characteristic of mutual dissolution of the oil and organic solvents, organic solvents such as hexane are used to dissolve the oil out of the crushed oil cake, which could reduce the oil content in the oil seed residue to lower than 1 percent.
Compared with pressing, solvent extraction can be implemented in better production condition and achieve much higher oil yield at lower costs.
Regarding the safety of solvent extracted oil, as hexane can be divided into industrial grade and food grade, the hexane used in oil extraction factory must be the latter. As has been removed of heavy metals, the lead and arsenic residues in the food grade hexane are lower than 10 ppb, which causes no harm to the oil.
Indeed, high temperatures can turn oil into trans-fatty acids, but such transformation only happens when the temperature is above 220 degrees Celsius, while the highest temperature of the removal solvents is only 110 degrees Celsius.
Read the Chinese version: 食以安为先 解析2012六大“饮食谣言”; Source: Beijing Morning Post
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