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Is Cottonseed Oil Good or Bad for You? Uses, Dangers, Benefits

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Is Cottonseed Oil Good or Bad for You? Uses, Dangers, Benefits

You may have noticed that the benefits and use of edible oils have been getting more attention lately. We try to distinguish between good oil and bad oil. One often thinks of cottonseed oil, a commonly used cooking oil that is thought to be made of cottonseed oil.

In fact, it is known as the original American vegetable oil. So why is cottonseed oil considered one of the dangerous foods in the American diet? Let’s dive in.

What is cottonseed oil?

Cotton seed oil – edible oil from cottonseed. It belongs to the same category as rapeseed oil, soybean oil and safflower oil because it is a truly combustible vegetable oil that is recycled and can easily oxidize when exposed to high temperatures, light, and air.

Cottonseed oil is refined to remove gas sipol, a natural poison that protects the plant from insects. This natural pesticide can be toxic when used, so it is always removed from the seeds used to produce edible oil or flour.

In many processed and packaged products, you will find hydrogenated cottonseed oil in the list of ingredients. Used in salad dressings, cakes, flakes, and much more.


Cottonseed oil has many applications. It is known for its use as edible oil, such as canola or soybean oil. It is also used in shortened and packaged products.

The following products may contain cottonseed oil

In the food industry, it is used for baking, to moisten baked goods, and to ensure the smooth consistency of whipped cream and ice cream.

Cottonseed oil is also used in some cosmetic products. It is used as an oil and softener, which can soften the skin.

It is odorless and is used as a moisturizer for the skin. Cottonseed oil is found in facial and body cleansers, eye make-up, and lipstick.

Potential Benefits

1. Contains linoleic acid

Approximately 55% of refined cottonseed oil consists of polyunsaturated fats such as linoleic acid. It is an omega-6 fatty acid that, when used in moderation, helps to reduce inflammation, reduce the risk of heart disease, improve brain function, and strengthen immune function.

Linoleic acid is also present in safflower, sunflower, corn, and sesame oils.

These omega-6 fatty acids should be consumed at the same time as omega-3 fatty acids. Unfortunately, the standard American diet contains too much omega-6 fat, which can actually be harmful to health.

2. Releases oleic acid

Almost 20% of cottonseed oil contains oleic acid, an omega-9 fatty acid found naturally in vegetable fats. Oleic acid is known for its ability to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

It can also help prevent type 2 diabetes, fight infections, and promote brain function.

Olive oil, almond oil, and avocado oil contain even more oleic acid, which is good for the health of the heart.

3. Promotes healthy skin

Cottonseed oil has a positive effect on the skin thanks to its moisturizing and softening properties. Untreated cottonseed oil contains vitamin E oil, which has an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effect.

Although there is no scientific evidence for this advantage of cottonseed oil, it is generally used locally for these reasons. Don’t forget that pesticides may be present if you don’t use organic products.

4. Protects the hair.

Cottonseed oil helps moisturize the hair and scalp and can also help reduce or eliminate dandruff. It can also be used as a styler to add shine and brown color to your hair, reducing the need for hair products with chemical additives.

Your hair will break less quickly if you use only a small amount of cottonseed oil for styling.


1. Toxicity of Gossypol

Studies published in the Scientific World Journal show that the use of high concentrations of Gossipol can lead to clinical signs of Gossipol poisoning, which may include shortness of breath, weakness, apathy and weight loss.

In addition to the possibility of health problems associated with Gosipol poisoning, this compound can also cause reproductive problems in men and women and can also affect immune function.

Cotton seed oil purchased for cooking is subjected to an extensive process of removal of the contents of the state slag. They would have to take a high concentration of the substance to suffer from state poisoning.

2. May contain pesticides

Because cotton is not classified as a food crop, it is often grown with a high pesticide content. When you buy a single cottonseed product, you are looking for an organic variety from a reputable source. However, beware of packaged products containing this ingredient, as they are most likely to contain ordinary cottonseed oil.

3. High omega-6 content.

Like many other vegetable oils, cottonseed oil contains large amounts of omega-6 fatty acids. A diet rich in these fats and low in omega-3 fatty acids can lead to inflammation.

Omega-6 fatty acids are found in many unhealthy and convenient products such as French fries, pizza, salad dressings and cold cuts.

If you eat cottonseed oil together with unhealthy processed food, it’s not healthy for you. That is why vegetable oils, such as cottonseed, are foods to be avoided.

Healthier alternatives

Because of the potentially toxic substances present in cottonseed oil, and because it contains large amounts of omega-6 fatty acids, there are healthier alternatives. These include :

Extra virgin olive oil

Olive oil contains more oleic acid and other monounsaturated fatty acids for a healthy heart. It is known to reduce inflammation and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

It is best used to wash salads or to season sauces and ready meals.

Coconut oil

Coconut oil contains MCTs or medium-chain triglycerides, which help to increase metabolism, stimulate energy and maintain brain function. Ideal for cocktails, baking and cooking.

Avocado oil

If you are looking for the perfect oil to fry, choose avocado oil. It is rich in antioxidants such as lutein and much higher in monounsaturated fats than cottonseed and other vegetable oils.


  • Cotton seed oil is considered a vegetable oil and is often used in processed and packaged foods.
  • Although it is consumed in small quantities, it has potential health benefits due to its fatty acid content and is generally eaten with unhealthy, inflammatory and unhealthy foods.
  • There are healthier oils that contain more heart fat and less omega-6 fatty acids. The best options are coconut oil, olive oil and avocado oil.