Perilla – The Genius Herb

Certain herbs on this earth are simply amazing and benefit the human race by proportions that none of us can easily imagine. Essential oils that are obtained from them are of double benefits, Perilla essential oil is one such essential oil.

Perilla is a member of the mint family, Lamiaceae. The most common species is Perilla frutescens var. japonica or shiso, which is mainly grown in India and East Asia. It is an herb considered rich in minerals and vitamins and has anti-inflammatory properties. It is also a very rich source of the omega-3 fatty acid, alpha-linolenic acid. Perilla ketone is toxic to some animals and may cause pulmonary edema leading to a condition sometimes called perilla mint toxicosis.

Perilla oil is rich in alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which is a type of omega-3 essential fatty acids. When we consume perilla oil, our body converts the alpha-linolenic acid into the two most prominent omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA. I hope you are aware of the several EPA, DHA benefits on our body. Omega 3 provided by perilla seed oil has proven to be beneficial for our body in the following ways: reducing the risk of breast and colon cancer, heart attacks, Inhibiting cardiac arrhythmia and abnormal blood clotting etc.

Perilla oil is obtained from the seeds of perennial herbs of the genus Perilla, usually Perilla frutescens. The seeds contain 35 to 45 percent oil which is obtained by pressing. Perilla oil is used along with synthetic resins in the production of varnishes. Perilla oil dries in less time than linseed oil and on drying forms a film that is harder and yellows more than that formed by linseed oil. The paint and varnish industry accounts for the largest usage. Perilla oil also is important in the manufacture of printing inks and linoleum, and in more ancient times was a critical component in creating durable earthen floors.

In parts of Asia, perilla oil is used as an edible oil that is valued more for its medicinal benefit than its flavor. Perilla oil is a very rich source of the omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). About 50 to 60% of the oil consists of ALA.

In Korea, perilla is mainly cultivated in –

  • Chungcheong
  • Gyeongsang
  • Jeolla Province

So that’s why the locals there consume perilla oil a lot. In Korean cuisine, it is used for marinating namul (seasoned vegetable dish), coating grilled gim (Korean laver), or pan-frying jeon (pancake-like dish).

Okay now, have a look at our reference links…

  1. Perilla Oil by buzzle.com
  2. Perilla Oil by Answers
  3. Perilla Seed by Wise Geek

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