Have you ever asked yourself why there is such disparity in price among natural skin care products and plant oils?
Probably you have based a certain amount of trust in the idea that the more expensive organic health products are, the better the quality and the better they are for you.
Which makes sense. But. Do you really understand why?
Probably you would want to know that when you economize on quality it might not simply be a matter of purchasing lesser therapeutic strength.
The truth is that even the most beneficial plants can produce oils that are harmful to your body when not processed and handled with sufficient care and attention to detail.
Known as the 'Fat Guru', Dr. Udo Erasmuscar is a person who has become famous for ground-breaking research into nutrition. Author of "Fats That Heal Fats That Kill", and largely responsible for bringing the words Omega 3 and Omega 6 into everyday conversation, Erasmus tell us that the most beneficial fats in oils are destroyed by light, air and heat, and that mass marketing production techniques are changing natural, healthy oils into an end product that is unnatural and even toxic.
Basically, heat processing produces greater quantities of oils more quickly but it also alters the molecules of the otherwise good fats within to become toxic and health-threatening.
While Erasmus is principally concerned with dietary information, the good essential fatty acids that are so crucial to a healthful diet are equally significant when absorbed by the body via carrier oils.
Our skin and body: muscles, energy, mood, immunity, hormone and repair systems… can all receive a direct dose of these elemental foods through a quality body oil.
Benefits of Almond oil
Let's take Sweet Almond oil as a case in point. A popular carrier oil in natural skin care and aromatherapy known to be rich in essential nutrients and fats. Always and without exception, an organic or healthful wild plant will produce a substance most compatible with the body's natural composition.
So, you have your organic almonds. The whole ones are sold whole. Broken nuts are basically placed into a press to squash out the oil.
Organic cold-pressed almond oil
Cold-pressed sounds best at this point, does it not?
Especially when we appreciate the damage that high temperatures will do to the natural goodness in oils. However, expeller-pressed can mean the same thing as cold pressed, just that a harder seed or nut will increase the frictional heat at least a little and might need a controlled temperature to remain at a genuinely cold-pressed level… and standards for that vary from country to country. European regulations are currently the strictest. While in the US and other countries the rules are more lax.
So for Almond the ideal is cold or expeller-pressed. Extra virgin is the first extraction. And still, the final quality of the oil will depend on careful procedures to keep the oil protected from exposure to light and air. This is why you generally always see the most expensive oils in dark green or brown bottles.
The second extraction can still technically be cold-pressed and will be virgin. But after that our Almond may be expeller pressed at a higher temperature that is not cold.
And beyond that… some less discerning producers will take the pulp that has already undergone three extractions and use a solvent to extract more. Sometimes marketing the result as a cold-press because no heat is involved in the process.
Though the price difference may seem attractive, the difference in quality can be absolute.
And there is more worth knowing at this point.
'Refined' in this context is not a good thing. Even 'semi-refined'. Even if it is technically organic. These are terms that refer to high-heat processes that take out all or nearly all of the essential nutrition and have the potential to create toxic molecular alterations.
And with any of our carrier oils you can be sure of a therapeutic grade oil that will serve you as a truly organic health product, created with quality processing procedures.