Volume 51 (2002) Issue 7 Pages 457-461
The physical and chemical properties of crude roselle seed oil as well as its fatty acid composition were estimated and compared with those of corn oil. Campesterol, campestanol, stigmasterol, β-sitosterol and β-sitostanol fractions (the most common phytosterols) of both oils were also determined by GLC. The results indicated that the melting point (−1.1±0.3°C), unsaponifable matter (1.0±0.2%) and iodine value (109±7) of roselle seed oil were not significantly (P<0.05) different than those of corn oil (1.0±0.1°C, 1.1±0.2% and 117±5). Therefore, the oil could be classified as semi-dry oil. The oil contained significant amounts of triacyglycerols (69.2±1.6%) and sterols (3.5±0.4%). GLC analysis proved that the linoleic (45.3%), oleic (27.2±0.7%) and palmitic (17.3±0.8%) of roselle seed oil were the predominant fatty acids. Because of the similarity of roselle seed oil to corn oil in chemical composition and lipid fractions, roselle seed oil might provide a new source of edible oil. Further study on the nutritional and physiological value of roselle seed oil is needed.