Known as the “Liquid Gold of Morocco“ or “Moroccan Oil”, Argan Oil is absolutely fabulous oil ! This organic oil is valued for its nutritive and medicinal properties which are scientifically proven today.
Extracted from the argan kernels, Argan Oil has become one of the most expensive oils in the world. It has been the latest popular ingredient in the beauty industry and amongst the most-liked cosmetic products.
Argan Oil generally contains 3 times more of Vitamin E (Tocopherols) as compared to those in Olive Oil. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant which neutralizes free radicals and slowing down the process of skin ageing. Argan Oil has exceptionally rich of essential fatty acids (Omega 6,9) that regulates premature aging and fights against drying skin & loss of skin elasticity, which encourage the appearance of wrinkles. The vitamin F in argan oil too functionally helps defend the skin from drying.
Argan Oil has sterols (schottenol & spinasterol) which are rarely found in other oils that promotes moisture retention as well as optimizing the function of skin barrier. It also has squalene with antibacterial properties which is excellent for skin disorders such as eczema, psoriasis & acne, prevent against skin cancer, improves the growth and maturity of skin and nails. Triterpenes in argan oil which has anti-flammatory benefits is said to be effective in speeding up the healing of skin complications like acne, eczema, stretch marks and psoriasis.
Besides the cosmetics use, Argan Oil is also used for culinary purposes such as salad dressings and dipping oil as it has light yet pleasant taste. Daily consumption of culinary Argan oil promotes a heart-healthy lifestyle and is proven to be one of the helping factors that prevents various cancers, cardiovascular diseases and obesity. It also helps to reduce harmful levels of triglycerides in the blood, as compared to those dietary in-take of animal fats.
Ferulic acid in argan oil & olive oil is a rare antioxidant that is actually good for diabetes patients as it able to decrease blood-glucose levels, protects against many types of cancer, bone degeneration and menopausal symptoms. Carotene in argan oil helps maintain body immune system, inhibis growth of cancerous cells, helps inhibit the oxidation of bad cholesterol or LDL cholesterol and helps to lower the risk of arthritis. Argan oil has prostaglandin which helps to regulate body functions such as heart rate, blood pressure, smooth muscle contraction, circulation and immune function. Polyphenols in argan oil which has anti-ageing properties which helps to activate blood circulation and repair DNA damages caused by smoking and other toxic exposures.
PROCESS OF OIL EXTRACTION
The process of Argan oil extraction involves lots of time and labor. It would take long hours to several days in order to produce just a few liters of 100% organic Argan oil.
The process begins with collecting dried Argan fruits during summer, which would take a few weeks time. Covered with thick heavy pulp, an Argan fruit has hard-shelled nut inside it. The fleshy pulp is then removed to get the Argan nut.
The next crucial stage yet pain staking is the hand-cracking of Argan nuts by using two stones to remove the kernels or seeds. Each Argan nut has one to three almond-shaped oil-rich kernels, which are then parched into an earthen vessel for further process. Argan oil is basically prepared in two forms, for edible purposes and cosmetics purposes.
For edible purposes, the Argan kernels are gently roasted for some time, then ground in hand mills to get the oil paste which further pressed manually until becomes hard and extracts amber to orange-colored oil. The remaining pressed cakes are usually fed to cattle or goats. As for cosmetics purposes, the Argan kernels are not roasted in order as to avoid an excessive nutty scent. The kernels are put in the cold pressed machines to extract the oil, which is then further filtered.