Plant Foods for Human Nutrition

, Volume 62, Issue 1, pp 39–42 | Cite as

Antioxidant Protection of Edible Oils

  • Sabrina Ching Man Cheung
  • Yim Tong SzetoEmail author
  • Iris F. F. Benzie
Original Article


The ability of different cooking oils to withstand oxidation was investigated in relation to their native antioxidant capacity [measured as the Ferric Reducing/Antioxidant Power (FRAP) value]. The antiperoxidation effect of the presence of the Chinese herbs, du-zhong (Cortex Eucommia ulmoides) and ginseng (Panax ginseng C.A. Mayer) in corn oil was also investigated over 26 days’ storage at 55°C. Results showed that sesame oil had the highest FRAP value (803 μM), followed by canola oil (400 μM), and sunflower, peanut, corn and olive oils (100–153 μM). Oils with higher intrinsic antioxidant content showed higher resistance to oxidation, although this was not statistically significant. Corn oil to which was added the herbs du-zhong, ginseng or both had increased resistance to oxidation (conjugated diene level and lipid peroxide formation) over 26 days. FRAP values of the oil/herb mixtures decreased during this time, implying utilisation of herbal antioxidants. Results have implications for increasing the shelf-life and usage time of cooking oils by addition of herbs which can increase resistance of the oil to oxidation. Results have implications also for health, as it is possible that ingestion of these herbs could increase resistance of polyunsaturated fatty acids of cell membranes and lipoproteins to oxidation within the body.

Key words

Antioxidant Du-zhong FRAP Ginseng Oil 
Abbreviations: FRAP:

Ferric Reducing/Antioxidant Power (FRAP);


Lipid peroxidation (LPO).



The authors wish to thank The Hong Kong Polytechnic University and Macao Science & Technology Development Fund for funding this work.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sabrina Ching Man Cheung
    • 1
  • Yim Tong Szeto
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Iris F. F. Benzie
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Health Technology & InformaticsThe Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung HomKowloonChina
  2. 2.School of Health SciencesMacao Polytechnic InstituteMacauChina

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