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Properties And Health Benefits Of Palmitic Acid And Arachidonic Acid
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Have you ever heard the name of palmitic acid? Yes. During World War II, Naphthenic acid and palmitic acid were mixed to produce napalm. Palmitic acid or hexadecanoic acid, the saturated fatty acid, is found in butter, palm oil, coconut oil, cheese, meat and milk. Palmitic acid consists of salts names palmitates. The chemical formula of palmitic acid is C16H32O2. This white solid boils at 351-352*C and melts at 62.9*C. Palmitic acid index is 1.43 (70*C).
On the other hand, Arachidonic acid, unsaturated fatty acid, is found in human fat, brain, liver and glandular organs. The chemical formula of arachodonic acid is C20H32O2. The boiling point is 169*C -171*C. It melts at -49*C.
Chemical Properties Palmitic Acid Arachidonic Acid
Chemical Name Hexadecanoic acid Eicosatetraenoic Acid
Chemical Formula C16H32O2 C20H32O2
Melting Point 62.9*C -49*C
Boiling Point 351-352*C 169-171*C
Nutritional Implications Of Palmitic Acid:
• Palmitic acid raises cholesterol level but it does not increase cholesterol level if it can be mixed with linoleic acid.
• There is a risk of developing of cardiovascular diseases if you consume palmitic acid.
• Palmitate, salt of palmitic acid, has antioxidant properties.
• Palmitic acid can be called a source of vitamin A.
• In human oral cancer cells, palmitic acid stimulates metastasis.
Nutritional Implications Of Arachidonic Acid:
• This acid stimulates the growth of skeletal muscle by synthesizing muscle protein
• This acid is found in the brain in equal amount to docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Arachidonic acid maintains fluidity of hippocampal cell membrane.
• It protects the brain from stress
• It promotes the growth and repair of neurons by activating syntaxin-3.
• Neurological development is related to arachidonic acid.
• Lack of arachidonic acid in human brain may cause neuropsychiatric disorders like Bipolar Disorder and Alzheimer’s disease.
• To tempt inflammation in muscles, bodybuilders take this arachidonic acid supplements.
Recent studies have demonstrated that dietary fish oils rich in eicosapentaenoic acid Omega 3 increased arachidonic acid.
Thus from the above discussion we can come to conclusion that palmitic acid has many negative health effects and arachidonic acid has some positive health effects. However, don’t get panic and don’t give up palmitic acid rich food, like palm and coconut oil because then you will be deprived of other benefits of these two oils. It is better to consult your doctor about the proportion of intake of palmitic acid and arachidonic acid.
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