The Chemistry of Argan Oil
What chemical compounds does Argan Oil contain?
The Bio-Chemical Composition of Argan Oil?
Argan Oil has a rich bio chemical make up. It has a high nutrient content and a complex chemistry that give this oil its many benefits for skin care and health. This complex biological chemical make up includes compounds such as:
Triglycerides, Sapponins, Omega 3 and 6 Essential Fatty Acids,Triterpenes,Sterols, Carotenoids, Arganine,Squalene & Phenolic Compounds,Vitamin E.
The Argan tree is rich in saponins. More recently, Saponins have been proposed as protective agents against infective fungi and additionally against bacteria and protozoa and are linked to anti-cancer activity. Saponins are found in many plants and in the animal kingdom. They have a soapy character due to their surfactant properties.
Four sterol have been found in argan oil. The two major are named spinasterol and schottenol both are reputed to have anti-cancer properties. Compounds with the lanostane nucleus (ganoderates, lucidenates) have been isolated from a mushroom Polyporaceae. These sterols may be related to the use of that mushroom in the traditional Chinese and Japanese medicine. It is used to cure several pathologies (hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, hepatitis, gastritis, diabetes, bronchitis, and cardiovascular problems.
Tocopherols( Vitamin E ) & Anti-oxidants
One of the most powerful Anti-oxidants is Tocopherol/ Vitamin E. Alpha tocopherol makes up 69% of the tocopherols found in argan oil. Antioxidant flavonoids and Tocopherols found in Argan and cannot be synthesized by the body. These antioxidants are involved in many activities including: promoting good circulation and acting as a natural anti-inflammatory.
Argan oil is about twice as rich in tocopherol as olive oil (620 mg/kg vs. 320mg/kg). The main tocopherol is by far alpha-tocopherol (69%) whose eutrophic activity of well known, beta and gamma-tocopherol are found in roughly equal proportions (16% and 13% respectively), deltatocopherol is a much minor component (2%).
Argan oil is rich in linoleic acid which increases the production of prostaglandins 1 and thus is beneficial for people with rheumatologic conditions and cardiovascular problems. It is active in the maintenance and repair of the membrane that encloses the cells.
Typical Fatty Acid Content of Argan Oil
Fatty acid by %
Myristic C14:0 0.1-0.18
Palmetic C16:0 11-15.6
Stearic C18:0 4.5-5.9
Oleic C18:1 42.8-49
Linoleic C18:2 29-36.9
Linolenic C18:3 0-0.26
Arachidonic C20:4 0-0.4
Eisosaenoic C20:1 0-0.5
Triterpenoids are biologically active substances. The major constituents of the triterpenic fraction of argan oil are tirucallol, beta amyrine, butyrospermol, and lupeol. Triterpenoids are biologically active substances. The major constituents of the triterpenic fraction of argan oil are tirucallol, beta amyrine, butyrospermol,and lupeol.
The effects they can produce include:
beta amyrine (27.3%)–skin protection
butyrospermol ( 18%)–anti inflammatory
Phenolic compounds µg/kg oil
Phenolic compounds are produced by plants, microorganisms and industrially.
Phenolic compounds are synthsised in response to ecological pressures such insect attack, physical wounding and UV radiation. They are also found in food and plants that are used in natural medicine.
Phenolic compounds by µg/kg oil
Where to Buy Argan Oil
You can buy directly from some web pages where you see the add to cart buttons or visit our full online store to see our full range of cosmetic and culinary Argan Oil products. All prices that you will see include Free Delivery Worldwide.
Further Research & References
There have been a number of studies into the chemistry of Argan oil. Research into the possible medical applications focused on the chemical make up of culinary Argan oil in the Moroccan. This has revealed cholesterol reducing effects, chemo-preventative effects, uses for weight loss and cardiovascular disease. Scientific evidence and research supporting the health and medical applications of culinary Argan oil and capsules is available in our eBooklets.