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Is Macadamia Nut Oil as Healthy and Delicious as We are Told? ABSOLUTELY!

Updated on September 13, 2011

Discover the Benefits

I would like to say that my initial interest in Macadamia Nut Oil is health. There is little doubt that Macadamia Nut Oil is even better for you than Olive Oil. The big seller for me was taste! I first heard about this Oil when I read a book called The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman by Timothy Ferriss. I found it to be an entertaining read, but also had some interesting content. Part of this content was about Macadamia Nut Oil and the ability to use it to fry an egg. As we all know, fried eggs in most oils are just nasty. Don’t ever try to fry one in Olive Oil. You will gag! I had to try it!

I was amazed! I fried up an egg and to my utter disbelief, it tasted just like it had been fried in butter. I then tried it on my family. My husband had no idea that I had managed to slide a healthy alternative past him. I was sold.

The taste cannot be beat!

But is it Healthy?

I don’t pretend to be a scientist. I am an educated woman who appreciates scholarly resources. I am also a veteran investigator. Just because someone who is selling Macadamia Nut Oil says that it is the best does not mean to me that it is true. So I set out to investigate the claims. The first claim is that it tastes great. Taste is subjective, but I love it.

The second claim is that Macadamia Nut Oil possesses healthful properties that other cooking oils do not possess. In 2009, The American Institute of Nutrition, The Journal of Nutrition states that Macadamia Nut Oil is high in Palmitoleic Acid not contained in any of the top ten cooking oils. (Matthan*, Dillard, Lecker, LP, & Lichtenstein, 2009) OK. I can believe that the American Institute of Nutrition is not going to be biased.

The third claim is that Macadamia Nut Oil is low in saturated fat, polyunsaturated fat and high in monounsaturated fat. Avocado Living, Inc. states:

“Further, Macadamias and macadamia oil are low in damaging saturated fats, low in polyunsaturated fats, and high in monounsaturated (or "good") fats. Macadamia Nut Oil contains one of the highest levels of monounsaturated fat (84%) among all food oils, contributing to a nutritious and balanced diet, promoting longevity and a reduction in regenerative disease.

It is also very high in natural anti-oxidants and contains Omega 3 and Omega 6.” (Avocado Living, inc., 2011)

But does it really lower plasma total and LDL cholesterol levels? According to the Journal of Nutrition it does, at least in hypercholesterolemic (whatever that means) men. (Garg, Blake, & Wills, 2003)

Can you really cook with it? To find out, it is important to know what the smoke point of the oil is. To determine smoke point, oil is heated until the first amount of smoke is observed. That is the smoke point. It is a little more complicated than that, but essentially that is it. If you heat an oil past the smoke point, it begins to break down. (i.e. burn)

Smoke Points of Fats and Oils

Vegetable Shortening (Hydrogenated)






Olive Oil

325°F - 375°F

Corn Oil

400°F - 450°F

Canola Oil

425°F - 475°F

Clarified Butter

450°F - 475°F

Sunflower Oil

450°F - 475°F

Soybean Oil

450°F - 475°F

Safflower Oil

475°F - 500°F

(Danilo Alfaro, 2011)

To fry cook just about anything, you need to have a high smoke point. 375 degrees is the standard for deep frying. A higher smoke point oil may be used more than once to deep fry. However, once the oil’s smoke point drops below 375 degrees, it is no longer useable. Each time that you use an oil to fry, it’s smoke point drops.

So what is the smoke point of Macadamia Nut Oil? According to Natural, “This is an excellent frying oil due to its high heat capacity. Macadamia nut oil has a smoke point of 413 degrees F (210 C). It contains up to 85% monounsaturated fats and has a shelf life of around 2 years. It is good for stir fries, searing, baking or deep frying.” (Hupston, 2010)

Learn more:

What does all of the scientific mumbo jumbo mean? It means that Macadamia Nut Oil not only tastes great even for frying eggs, but it is darn good for you, too.

What is your opinion and how have you substituted Macadamia Nut Oil for other fats in your cooking?

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    • eisutton profile image

      eisutton 6 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      Ghaelach, taste is subjective. I love it. However,I also like onions. Out of curiosity, do you like Olive oil? Butter?

    • eisutton profile image

      eisutton 6 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      Susan, Yes. It can be used instead of Olive oil and I prefer the buttery taste.

    • Just Ask Susan profile image

      Susan Zutautas 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Interesting article. I make a lot of my own salad dressings. Can Macadamia Nut Oil be used instead of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, or is this oil mainly used just for cooking?

      Welcome to HubPages.

    • profile image

      Ghaelach 6 years ago

      Morning EISUTTON.

      Came upon your hub while hub-hopping.

      You have an interesting hub, but i can say right from the start i don't like the taste of it.

      May be good for you and as is the same as onions i can't eat them either.

      LOL Ghaelach