Hydrogenation of vegetable oil

Hydrogenation of vegetable oil, why?
Vegetable oils contain a mix of saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fatty acids. The mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids have double bonds, all in the normal “cis” formation. These bonds can easily be broken down by oxygen. This produces compounds that make the oil rancid. Rancidity produces off-flavors in foods.

palm oil
Hydrogenated vegetable oils chemical process

To control this, food manufacturers use hydrogenated vegetable oils. These are not as likely to break down and will produce a product with a longer shelf life. Hydrogenation is a chemical process that adds hydrogen atoms to the available double bonds in the vegetable oil. As the degree of hydrogenation increases, the amount of saturated fats increases and mono and polyunsaturated fats decrease. Completely hydrogenated fat is solid at room temperature. Moderately hydrogenated fats are liquid at room temperature and contain more saturated fatty acids than the original oil.
Hydrogenation of vegetable oil benefits a lot to shelf life, but hydrogenation also brings trans fatty acid, which is bad for human health. We should pay more attention to the content of hydrogenated vegetable oil.

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