Home Cosmetic Science Talk Formulating Advanced Questions What makes Meadowfoam oil so stable, compared to Rapeseed oil?

  • What makes Meadowfoam oil so stable, compared to Rapeseed oil?

    Posted by Anonymous on February 25, 2017 at 12:45 pm

    Meadowfoam seed oil is
    considered very stable with 5 year shelf life without getting rancid. What
    exactly makes meadowfoam seed oil so stable? Other oils seem similar, such as Rapeseed
    (canola) oil, Grapeseed oil, etc.

    Don’t most of these
    oils contain “polyunstaturated fatty acids”? 
    Aren’t polyunsaturated fatty acids naturally unstable and prone to short
    shelf life and quick rancidity?

     Note how Meadowfoam
    contains 61% gadoleic acid, along with other unsaturated fats, yet it is
    considered very stable.

    Grapeseed oil contains
    67% linoleic acid (unsaturated) , along with other unsaturated fats, yet it is
    considered NOT stable, with a very short shelf life, only ONE year, compared to
    meadowfoam seed oil, which has FIVE year shelf life.

    Coconut oil, on the
    other hand, is mostly saturated fats, and it is considered very stable.

     I know coconut oil, and
    palm oil, and others that contain high saturated fats have a long shelf life
    and do not get rancid easily.

    However, I do not understand
    why some of the other oils, particularly the ones containing polyunsaturated
    fats,  have such a high variability in
    shelf life? Grapeseed oil, pomegranate seed oil, almond oil, and avocado oil :
    these oils have shelf life of only ONE year.


    On the other hand,
    you have meadowfoam seed oil and castor oil, which also contain high level of
    polyunsaturated fats, yet they have a shelf life of FIVE years.

     Why is that? Is
    there something special about meadowfoam seed oil and castor oil which
    separates them from the rest and allows them to have such a stable shelf life?


    This is a nice short 2
    minute video of some common cooking oils, and their shelf life;  the results do not surprise me: They found
    almond oil , avocado oil, grapeseed oil, 
    ricebran oil, and sesame seed oil to last only 3-7 months! This was even
    WITH storage at 20 degrees C.


     I cannot find data about
    canola/rapeseed oil, a common cooking oil in some places, however I suspect its
    true shelf life will be similar to grapeseed and avocado oil, less than 12

     See some details about certain

    shelf life: FIVE years

    Fatty Acid Composition

    Brassic- 17.9%

    Erucic- 12.7%

    Gadoleic- 61.5%

    Oleic- 3.2%



    Grapeseed oil: Shelf
    life: only ONE YEAR

    Fatty Acid Composition

    Palmitic acid .6.7%

    Palmitoleic acid  0.2%

    Stearic acid  4.1%

    Oleic acid  20.9%

    Linoleic acid  66.8%

    Linolenic acid  0.4%

    Arachidic acid  0.1%




    Coconut oil: Shelf
    life: 4 years: note: mostly SATURATED, thus stable.

    Fatty Acid Composition












    Castor oil:

    Shelf Life: 5 years

    Fatty Acids

    Oleic- 3.93%

    Stearic 1.0%

    Palmitic- 1.0%

    Linoleic- 4.32%

    Linolenic- 0.3%

    Ricinoleic- 87.74%



    Pomegranate seed oil:

    Shelf Life: 1 year

    Fatty Acid Profile  % by weight

    Stearic     1.7

    Palmitic    2.47

    Oleic acid (Omega 9)   4.63

    Linoleic acid (Omega 6)   9.78

    Linolenic acid (Omega 3)  < 1.0

    Punicic acid (Omega 5)  66.7-80.0   

    Fatty Acid Distribution

    Saturated Fat       6.45%

    Monounsaturated Fat     5.06%

    Fatty Acids 68.34%

    Total Fatty Acids   80.08%     


    mixc replied 6 years, 9 months ago 2 Members · 2 Replies
  • 2 Replies
  • johnb

    February 25, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    Check your definitions of “monounsaturated and “polyunsaturated”.

    Ricinoleic acid is unique in being a monounsaturated hydroxystearic acid.

  • mixc

    February 26, 2017 at 5:02 pm

    According to Elementis (the leading distributor of Meadowfoam Oil in the World), the reason that it’s much more resistant to rancidity and oxidation is its inherent antioxidants content and most importantly, the unsaturated double bonds on the fatty acids are located at
    the Δ5 and Δ13 position. The lack of conjugated double bonds and natural antioxidants delivers oxidative stability, thus making it resistant to heat breakdown and oxidation. 

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