Connect with us

General

The Myth That Almost Took Down The Cotton Industry

The Myth That Almost Took Down The Cotton Industry

History is littered with examples of fashion trends that came back after near-death experiences—often more than once. (Big hair, anyone?) Surprisingly, the story of some food products is similar: an initial period of fascination, followed by a lengthy layoff as people move onto the next craze, followed by a resurgence based on the “rediscovery” of some benefit or value.

Among the many edible examples, cottonseed oil stands out due to its centuries-long history of use and the wild swings in the public’s perceptions about it. Let’s take a little walk down memory lane and learn why it pays to dispel some myths once and for all.

Cottonseed Oil History: The Early Days

In the before times—the mid-19th century—cottonseed oil was used, mostly due to its sheer abundance and a lack of affordable alternatives, for many things: heating, light, lubrication and more. By the turn of the 20th century, Crisco, Wesson and a handful of forgotten competitors figured out how to refine it into a palatable food product. Pretty soon, home cooks across America were using it to flavor just about everything. But the good times weren’t meant to last.

The Myth That Almost Took Down The Cotton Industry

Falling Out of Favor

Part of the reason cottonseed oil consumption fell during the mid to late 20th century nothing to do with health concerns. Soybeans, rapeseed and other alternatives were simply cheaper. But for whatever reason, this period also saw the rise of a potent myth about cottonseed oil’s fat profile. Specifically, nutritionists alleged that the oil had a higher proportion of saturated fats and “bad” cholesterol, key culprits in cardiovascular disease.

The problem, at least for those who made a living selling cottonseed oil, was that this theory wasn’t built on sound science. Pure cottonseed oil’s fat profile was (and still is) far healthier than those of its hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated vegetable oil replacements, the drawbacks of which nutritionists consistently underestimated for years.

The Trans Fat Controversy

To evade the supposed evils of cottonseed oil, producers turned to cheaper, more heavily processed oils. The hydrogenation process imparted a flavor that mimicked the crispness of cottonseed oil without the supposed health issues. And hydrogenated oil sure was tasty. But over the years, the link between heart disease and hydrogenation, which produced harmful compounds called trans fats, became clearer. Eventually, it became impossible for fair-minded scientists to ignore the evidence that hydrogenation and trans fats had significant, negative health ramifications.

What’s Old Is New Again

So the culinary world found itself right back where it started. The FDA mandated labeling of trans fats in 2006, effectively ending their widespread use. And pure cottonseed oil, long derided for its unhealthiness, gained favor as a healthy alternative to more heavily processed oils.

The rise and fall of cottonseed oil’s reputation is a cautionary tale for myth peddlers, sure, but it should also give pause to folks in search of the latest health fad. When it comes to determining what’s safe to put in our bodies and what should probably stay in the ground, facts and experience win the day.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts

What Do Business Consultants Do What Do Business Consultants Do
Business3 days ago

What Do Business Consultants Do?

Business consultants can be a huge help to your business – or a big expense that doesn’t give you the...

Careers You Can Start Without A 4-Year Degree and Benefits Of A Degree Careers You Can Start Without A 4-Year Degree and Benefits Of A Degree
Education3 days ago

Careers You Can Start Without A 4-Year Degree and Benefits Of A Degree

Among Baby Boomers and members of the Greatest Generation who got to get a college degree, career success and high...

3 Improvements To Add To Your Home 3 Improvements To Add To Your Home
Home Improvement1 week ago

3 Improvements To Add To Your Home

If you are getting a little bored of your home, you should start looking at things that you can do...

Rebuilding Your Life After A Personal Injury Incident Rebuilding Your Life After A Personal Injury Incident
Law2 weeks ago

Rebuilding Your Life After A Personal Injury Incident

After you have suffered a life-altering experience following a personal injury incident, you will begin the process of rebuilding your...

Best Ways to Improve Your Career Best Ways to Improve Your Career
Business3 weeks ago

Best Ways to Improve Your Career

Working on improving yourself is a continuous process. One that chisels you to perfection every time you do it. It...

New to Golfing? 4 Etiquette Tips You Need to Know New to Golfing? 4 Etiquette Tips You Need to Know
Entertainment1 month ago

New to Golfing? 4 Etiquette Tips You Need to Know

Golf is a sport that is governed by some very specific etiquette rules. If you are just taking up golf,...

How to Manage Scoliosis In Adult Period How to Manage Scoliosis In Adult Period
Health1 month ago

How to Manage Scoliosis In Adult Period

We always start thinking about our health, and the importance of it, once something goes wrong. When that inevitably happens,...

Simple Ways To Stay Warm This Winter Simple Ways To Stay Warm This Winter
Lifestyle1 month ago

Simple Ways To Stay Warm This Winter

You shouldn’t have to compromise on style for warmth, which is why we have put together this guide on how...

Staying On Schedule When Traveling With Family Staying On Schedule When Traveling With Family
Travel2 months ago

Staying On Schedule When Traveling With Family

There is a lot of planning that goes into traveling with your family, especially if you are trying to stick...

Do You Need A Lawyer When Filing For Divorce? Do You Need A Lawyer When Filing For Divorce?
Lifestyle2 months ago

Do You Need A Lawyer When Filing For Divorce?

Since divorce is a relatively common legal proceeding, some couples opt for a DIY approach. They decide to download the...

Unique First Home Gifts For Your Loved Ones Unique First Home Gifts For Your Loved Ones
Lifestyle2 months ago

Unique First Home Gifts For Your Loved Ones

If one of your loved ones is moving into their first home, we have the perfect gifts for you. Each...

Should Your Business Offer International Shipping? Should Your Business Offer International Shipping?
Business2 months ago

Should Your Business Offer International Shipping?

In today’s world, many businesses have the opportunity to reach a global audience and find new ways to grow. But,...

Why Isn't Your Company Website Seeing Traffic? Why Isn't Your Company Website Seeing Traffic?
Marketing3 months ago

Why Isn’t Your Company Website Seeing Traffic?

Are you hooked? Do you check your website’s Google Analytics frequently, only to be disappointed every time you see it? ...

Resources and Assistance For The Parents Of Children With Autism Resources and Assistance For The Parents Of Children With Autism
Education3 months ago

Resources and Assistance For The Parents Of Children With Autism

Raising a child with autism can be a challenge. For most neurotypical people (i.e., those who do not have autism),...

How to Improve Your Company Parking Lot Safety For Your Employees How to Improve Your Company Parking Lot Safety For Your Employees
General3 months ago

How to Improve Your Company Parking Lot Safety For Your Employees

When your workers park in the corporate lot, you want them to feel comfortable and protected. Your staff shouldn’t have...

Categories

Archives

Trending