Palm oil is packed with nutrients and it is excellent for cooking. It is used in many foods such as margarine and shortening.
When used daily, it has shown to increase energy levels. It contains high amounts of the antioxidants beta carotene and Vitamin E. Research has shown that Vitamin E can reduce the risk of heart disease and may prevent certain kinds of cancer.
There is a current debate as to using palm oil as an acceptable replacement for trans-fats. The debate centers on whether or not there is a significant amount of evidence to support the claim that the trans-fat in palm oil is harmful and if it is as harmful as cooking with lard when it comes to saturated fat. Pure palm oil contains more saturated fat than any other cooking oil.
Today, it is controversial to harvest and cultivate palm trees for oil because the majority of the trees are located in the Brazilian rain forest. Conservationists do not want the palm trees to be used to produce palm oil, because there is a growing concern about preservation of the rainforest. When the palm tree reaches the height of maturity, they are cut down and this threatens endangered species who survive and thrive upon the fruits and they use the tree as housing. Because of growing concerns a pilot program is underway in places like the Brazilian rainforest, for every tree that is chopped down seedlings for new trees are immediately planted. Brazilian palm trees accounted for over half the world’s production of palm tree oil.