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2 Jun 2009

Sesame Seed Oil

For thousands of years in the Middle East and Asia, sesame seed oil was, and still is, popular for it's health, beauty and culinary uses. The Ancient Chinese also used sesame oil in their lamps, and with the soot made their ink-blocks. It has a distinctively sweet and nutty flavour and aroma, and is light yellow in colour. Sesame seed oil is also called benne, gingili, til or teel oil in some countries. The most healthy and nutritious oil to purchase is virgin, cold-pressed, gmo-free, unrefined, raw seeds.

Sesame seed oil contains vitamins A, B and E, magnesium, copper, calcium, iron, phosphorus and zinc. It also contains linolenic acid, alpha linolenic acid and lecithin, giving it some of it's amazing health properties. It is an antibacterial, anti-fungal, antiviral and anti-inflammatory oil. The oil is 82% polyunsaturated fatty acids including omega-3, omega-6 and omega-9. Polyunsaturated fatty acids are necessary for growth and necessary in the prevention and treatment of many chronic diseases like coronary heart disease and arthritis.

It is made up of about 50% oleic acid. Oleic acid is excellent for lowering cholesterol levels by raising levels of HDL's while lowering LDL's (known as "bad" cholesterol). Sesame lignans also lower cholesterol levels by hindering the absorption and formation of cholesterol. Research shows that the oil can neutralize free oxygen radicals within the skin and surrounding tissues. In addition, sesame seed oil contains two important antioxidants sesamolin and sesamol, which amongst many things can increase vitamin E activity.

Sesame seed oil has many first-aid uses like soothing sun and wind burn, sore gums, athletes foot and nail fungus, and painful joints. Has also been said to help restless sleepers from repeated waking up during the night, if massaged into the feet before going to sleep. Mum find it handy for baby too as it can be used on their skin in the area covered by a nappy/diaper to protect against rashes caused by urine. The oil can be used to remove the milk like crust sometimes seen on a baby's head.

Beauty wise, sesame seed oil is loved by beauticians and masseurs Worldwide, due to it having anti-wrinkle, antioxidant, softening, hydrating, nourishing and penetrating properties. It also neutralizes oxygen radicals, one of the major causes of ageing and tightens facial skin. Excellent for both dry and oily problem skin and dandruff. It absorbs toxins from skin leaving it healthy, soft and clean. Easy to do a self massage of ones face or body and then rinse off in the shower. On top of everything it is also a great ultraviolet ray blocker, so apply before going out in the sun.

In the kitchen it is generally used in two forms, either the cold pressed form or the stronger tasting Asian style oil which is extracted from toasted sesame seeds. To keep the health properties of the oil and not to overpower dishes with the fairly strong sesame flavour rather add a little oil to dishes after stir frying or roasting. It is also wonderful added to marinades and dressings. Try it on a cold noodle or pasta salad...yummy!

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Hair Mask

2 tbsps warm sesame oil
2 tbsps neem oil

Mix and massage into scalp, comb hair with wide tooth comb, wrap hair in a hot towel or cling wrap and keep on for at least 15 minutes or overnight, then shampoo out.


Sunblock
From Care2 Green Living
Posted by Annie B. Bond

1 cup zinc oxide paste
½ cup sesame oil
½ cup orange blossom water, at room temperature
½ cup distilled water, at room temperature

Spoon the zinc oxide paste and pour the sesame oil into the top of a double boiler. Stir as best you can. Fill the bottom of the double boiler 1/4 full of water and bring to a gentle boil. Place the top of the pan containing the paste and oil over the bottom and gently heat, stirring constantly for 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Add the orange blossom water and distilled water, mixing thoroughly. Store in a wide mouthed jar with lid; decorate with stickers, if desired. Yield: 2 cups
To use: Dab on the skin. Do not rub in. The more opaque the product is on you, the more effective the sunblock.


Stretch Mark Oil

1/2 tsp organic cold pressed sesame oil
1/2 tsp or 2 capsules vitamin E oil
1/2 tsp organic cold pressed wheat germ oil
4 drops rose otto or 4 drops lavender essential oils

Do not use during first trimester of pregnancy or while breast feeding. Massage regularly on stretch mark area.


Ginger Dandruff Treatment

1 tbsp ginger root juice
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp lemon juice

Mix all ingredients. Apply to scalp and let dry before shampooing. Repeat three times a week.


Cucumber Salad
From Chinese Food at About.com
By Rhonda Parkinson

As with any cucumber salad recipe, the trick is to keep the cucumbers crisp and water from collecting at the bottom of the bowl. I find that weighting down the cucumbers during salting so they release more water really helps. Be sure to quickly toss the salad one more time before serving. ~ Rhoda

2 medium cucumbers
1 1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsps red wine vinegar
5 1/2 tsps soy sauce
2 tsps organic cold pressed sesame oil
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/4 - 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper, according to taste
1 medium red bell pepper, cut into chunks
2 scallions (green onion, spring onion), thinly chopped

Peel the cucumbers if desired. Cut in half lengthwise, and scoop out the seeds in the middle. Cut diagonally into thin slices, no more than 1/2-inch thick. Lay the cucumber slices in a colander and sprinkle with salt. Leave for at least 1 hour and pat dry with paper towels, squeezing out any excess water.
Note: To help drain more water from the cucumbers, I weighed them down with 2 resealable plastic bags about 3/4 full with water. You can also use a saucer to weigh down the cucumbers.
While desalting the cucumbers, in a small bowl, whisk together the red wine vinegar, soy sauce and sesame oil. Whisk in the sugar and crushed red pepper. Simmer the dressing over very low heat for 2 - 3 minutes, (this allows the flavours to blend). Remove the cucumbers and pat dry with paper towels, squeezing out any excess water. Place the cucumbers in a large bowl and add the red bell pepper and chopped scallion. Drizzle the dressing over the salad. Toss, cover and chill for at least 2 hours before serving, (preferably longer). Toss the salad in the dressing again before serving. Serves 3 to 4.

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4 comments:

Ram Bansal, the Theosoph said...

Thanks for very useful information on sesame oil which is the second best bodyguard of human health after the Olive oil.

Mike Foster said...

All great, but that cuke salad has my mouth watering...

peace,
mike
livelife365

Annie Schiffmann said...

Thanks for the great post!

Princess Haiku said...

Hi Jackie,
Thanks for the visit. I have been away from my blog for sometime but wandering back. I used to make sesame salt which was divine. You just toast sesame seeds in a skillet and mix them in with a little sea salt. -Tastes delicious on rice and veggies.