The name may sound a bit confusing, but when we are talking of “Natural Organic Oils”, we are certainly not talking about “Natural Oils” mined from deep down under the earth, the ones we call Petroleum. Our “Natural Oils” primarily mean naturally occurring organic vegetable oils, or the oils that are derived from plants. Let us define it first.
Definition of Natural Vegetable Oils:
Natural Vegetable Oils are those naturally occurring lipids present in various parts of plants, primarily in plant seeds, that are extracted in from of oils. Once extracted, some of these oils remain liquid in room temperature while a few condense into solid or semi-solid forms. In terms of chemistry, these lipids are composed of fatty acids, monoglycerides, diglycerides, triglycerides and unsaponifiable lipids.
Organic Natural Oils:
Now that we know what “Natural Vegetable Oils”, it’s time to know what “Organic” natural oils mean. It means the natural oils (Okay, don’t get confused again! I have already defined it above) which are extracted from plants that are raised without the use of any synthetic or chemical fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides or any other synthetic substance. To ensure that these natural organic oils do not contain even the slightest traces of these toxic chemical residues when they are made available to you, these plants are raised either on virgin lands (lands whereon these chemicals were never used) or on lands that are made free from such residues by applying natural healing processes.
Significance of Natural Organic Oils:
When you have read this much, hadn’t this occur to you that what was the need of defining the term “Organic” at all? What difference does it make? How does it affect our lives? My dear! Whether or not a substance is organic makes a lot of difference and is really a matter of concern. If that substance, take for example Natural Oils in this case, is not organic, then it is sure to contain residues of all those toxic chemicals (including compounds of lead in some cases) used on it during its cultivation, extraction, processing and packaging. These toxic chemicals ultimately make their way into our body through external or internal applications of these oils and can have disastrous effects on our body in the long run. But if these Natural Oils are organic, you saved the trouble! You really don’t want these poisons to get into your body and ruin your organs! Do you? So, that’s how significant it is!
Classification of Natural Oils:
Natural Oils can be broadly categorized into following categories;
- Natural Edible Oils: These oils are primarily used in food and sometimes for external applications on body. Since either ways they are being absorbed by the body, whether or not these natural oils are Organic is a question of prime importance. From health’s point of view, these natural oils must & must be organic. Displayed below is a list of all major natural edible oils that are available in their organic forms in the market.
- Organic Ben Oil
- Organic Canola Oil
- Organic Coconut Oil (Also available in Virgin, Extra Virgin forms)
- Organic Corn Oil
- Organic Cotton Seed Oil
- Organic Mustard Oil (It is strange to note that in many countries, it is not used as edible oil but it is available in organic form. While in others, like in the Indian Subcontinent, where it is widely used as an edible oil, it’s organic form is seldom available)
- Organic Olive Oil (Also available in Virgin, Extra Virgin forms)
- Organic Palm Oil
- Organic Peanut Oil
- Organic Rice Bran Oil
- Organic Safflower Oil
- Organic Sesame Oil
- Organic Soy Oil
- Organic Sunflower Oil
Note: Hydrogenated Natural Vegetable Oils cannot be called Organic because some certain chemical compounds (like compounds of Nickel) are used in hydrogenation. Further, the process of hydrogenation is a synthetic process and it does not leave the oil in its natural form.
- Natural Essential Oils: The oils that we discussed above are the major oils that are extracted mainly by cold compression from, primarily from seeds. Those oils are mainly long chains of fatty acids and hence are stable and non-volatile. But there is another type of oil present in plants, known as Essential Oils. These are very unstable, volatile oils that are present mainly in leaves, flowers, peels, stem & roots. They are mostly made up of rings of carbon instead of straight chains as in case of major oils, and hence are aromatic in nature. Essential Oils are more extracted through distillation processes (steam distillation, heating etc.) & maceration than cold compression. Being formed of rings of carbon and having characteristic aroma, these essential oils have miraculous medicinal properties and are widely used in medicines, foods and cosmetics. Since they are so significant, their Organic forms cannot be compromised with. Below is a non-exhaustive list of some Natural Organic Essential Oils;
|Agar Wood||Cistus||Laurel (Bay Laurel)||Rosemary|
|Ajwain (Bishop’s Weed)||Citronella||Lavender||Rosewood|
|Allspice||Clary Sage||Lavandin||Rose Otto|
|Angelica||Copla Resin||Lemon Verbena||Sassafras|
|Aniseed||Costmary||Litsea Cubeba||Savory (Summer)|
|Asafoetida||Costus Bud||Lotus||Savory (Winter)|
|Atlas Cedar||Cranberry Seed||Mandarin||Savin|
|Bergamot||Curry Leaf||Mentha Arvensis||Spikenard|
|Bitter Almond||Dill||Mustard||Star Anise|
|Black Currant Bud||Eucalyptus Citriodora||Myrtle||Tansy|
|Black Pepper||Eucalyptus Dives||Neem||Tarragon|
|Black Sage||Eucalyptus Globulus||Neroli||Tea Tree|
|Camphor||Fennel Seed||Palma Rosa||Valerian|
|Cedar Leaf||Horse Radish||Peppermint||Yarrow|
|Cedar (Red)||Idaho Tansy||Pimento||Zedoary|
|Cedar (Western Red)||Inula Graveolens||Pine|
Note: Not all Essential Oils are edible. Some of them can be poisonous too. Just being an Organic Essential Oil does not mean that it is safe for consumption. They must be administered under supervision of an expert.
- Natural Inedible Oils: Just like not all Organic Essential Oils are safe, all natural oils are not edible too. There are many natural oils that are used for purposes other than eating. They find wide uses in industries producing cosmetics, soaps, candles, perfumes, paints, lubricants, insulators, bio diesel etc. Here are some;
- Linseed Oil
- Tung Oil
- Castor Oil
- Jatropha Oil
- Hemp Oil
Since these oils are not edible, it does not matter whether they are organic or not. Therefore, they are seldom found in organic form.
Benefits of Natural Organic Oils:
The benefits of Natural Organic Oils can be broadly categorized as follows;
- Health Benefits: Ideally, all those Natural Oils, including the Essential Oils, that are edible or are used on human body externally, must be Organic because they ultimately get absorbed into our bodies. If they are organic, then you are protected from the residues of those toxic chemicals which are otherwise found in the conventional natural oils. In the long run, these toxic chemicals can cause organ failure, neurotic & nervous disorders, hypertension, blindness and even cancer. But health benefits are not the only benefits of organic products.
- Other Benefits: Did you know that organic products are environment friendly too? How? Because we do not use these harmful chemicals in raising & processing them; they do not pollute air, water & land. So, that means, edible or not, all Natural Oils should be organic.
Availability of Natural Organic Oils:
Now that people are much more aware of the benefits of organic products and are much more concerned about their environment, Natural Organic Oils are widely available in all major cities in most countries, except in economically or educationally backward areas.
Natural Oils must be certified as “Organic” by the registered & recognized certifying agencies to ensure their authenticity. Displayed below is a list of a few of such recognized certification agencies, although you may have an entirely different in your country.
- USDA National Organic Program (NOP)
- European Organic Regulations (EU 2092/91)
- Export Certificates for Japan (JAS Equivalent)
- Indian National Programme for Organic Production (NPOP).
- Quebec Organic Reference Standard (CAAQ)
- Bio Suisse Standards
- IOFAM Basic Standards
Hope that was all you needed to know before you get started with Natural Organic Oils. See you again!