How would you like to lose that stubborn fat from around your belly without starving yourself, counting calories, or increasing how much you exercise? It might sound impossible, but a new medical study has shown that you can do it with one simple thing: just add two teaspoons of Safflower Oil to your diet every day.
A study appearing in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and widely reported by the media in the summer of 2009, claims that post-menopausal women with Type-2 diabetes who added two teaspoons of Safflower Oil to their diet, lost 2 to 4 pounds of belly fat and increased their muscle mass by as much as 3 pounds. The women didn’t change their diets or exercise habits. The safflower oil was also shown to lower their blood sugar by as much as 19 points. While this study included only women, previous studies have shown that men can benefit from the CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) found in safflower oil as well. How safflower oil reduces belly fat is unclear, but Ohio State University professor, Dr. Martha Belury, who conducted the study, said it may be related to changes in the functioning of tissue where the fat is stored.
What is safflower oil? The oil comes from safflower seeds, produced by the Carthamus Tinctorinus, which is a spiny, thistle-like plant. It flowers in July and produces 15 to 20 seeds per flower head. The oil comes from these seeds. Safflower Oil is rich in Omega-6 fatty acids, in fact having the highest amount of linoleic acid of any seed. The oil is flavorless, colorless, and very sensitive to light and heat. Like olive and other oils used in cooking, it should be stored in a cool, dark place, to prevent it from breaking down and becoming rancid.
Interestingly, traditional Chinese medicine and native Americans used safflowers for very similar reasons: as an external treatment for measles and as an internal aid to bring-on menstruation. Other research unrelated to the above study has shown that the flowers of the safflower plant (not the oil) to be useful in lowering cholesterol. There are also unsupported claims that the flowers reduce pain, fever, and enlarged breasts. Additionally it is claimed that if you massage your scalp with safflower oil, it will nourish the scalp and hair as well as dilate the blood vessels in the scalp, thus increasing the hair’s supply of vital nutrients.