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Palm Fruit Oil vs. Palm Kernel Oil

I was food shopping the other day, reading labels as usual, and I came upon the ingredient palm fruit oil. I kind of assumed that it was the same as palm kernel oil, but I was wrong. Palm fruit oil (also called palm oil) is extracted from the fruit of the oil palm tree while palm kernel oil comes from the palm seed found inside the fruit. Eighty-six percent of the fat in palm kernel oil is saturated (the not so healthy fat), while only 50 percent of the fat from palm fruit oil is saturated, which makes it a healthier choice for your arteries. Even though it's high in saturated fat, some research suggests that the fatty acids in palm oil can actually raise HDL (good) cholesterol levels in your body. I haven't found any substantial medical evidence to prove this though.

So when you're checking labels, be on the lookout for these oils since they're found in margarines and many processed foods. If the saturated fat content is high, you may want to skip out on certain products, especially if you have issues with high cholesterol or your heart.

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