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Rice Bran Oils

Cooking up a Healthy Plat­ter

As ‘healthy’ ed­i­ble oil, rice bran oil fits in well enough with our ‘healthy life­style choices’. It has vi­ta­mins, an­tiox­i­dants, nu­tri­ents—the works, if you may. It is trans-fat-free too. It is also del­i­cate and flavourful. While all th­ese as­pects may hold good, are all brands of rice bran oils made equal – in other words, are they all as good as an­other and do they meet the ba­sic re­quire­ments? What do we know about their ‘fatty acid pro­file’? And are they free of pes­ti­cides, heavy met­als and tox­ins—the scourge of our times? This re­port is a first-hand study of 11 brands avail­able with var­i­ous re­tail­ers in In­dia and the good news is that in the over­all score a mere four points sep­a­rate the brands at the top and the bot­tom.

All the 11 brands were pur­chased from re­tail­ers in Delhi, Mumbai, Chen­nai and Kolkata. Th­ese were in poly­packs of one litre ca­pac­ity. Most men­tioned the nu­tri­tional val­ues of the oil on the pack­ag­ing. Based on the eval­u­a­tion of test re­sults and over­all grad­ing, it can be con­cluded that all the Rice bran oil (also known as rice bran ex­tract) is the oil ex­tracted from the germ and in­ner husk of rice. It is no­table for its high smoke point. Its mild flavour makes it suit­able for high­tem­per­a­ture cooking meth­ods such as stir fry­ing and deep fry­ing.

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