Mustard oil is a delicacy in some parts of the world and is used in many native cuisines. In the US, Canada, and EU, pure mustard oil cannot be eaten. It contains mustard seed, which is not allowed to be consumed by law.
Mustard oil is used most often as a massage oil, but it is not commonly used in cooking or imported into the United States. It can be used for different types of recipes but has been banned from many countries, e.g. the US and Canada because of its ingredients’ country restrictions.
You can sell mustard oil in the United States but you will be required to bear a warning label stating that it is for external use only.
According to the New York Times, one of the best ways to enjoy mustard oil is by traveling to countries like Korea, China, and Bangladesh. These countries have some of the spiciest recipes of all using mustard oil.
Is Mustard Oil Allowed in the USA?
In response to consumer safety concerns, high doses of erucic acid might be potentially harmful. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, as well as regulators in the EU and Canada, have determined that it can be dangerous when consumed regularly.
According to Medical News Today, there are indicators that mustard oil can cause heart problems in children under the age of 18, so if you have young children at home, try to avoid using pure oil in their recipes. It might also cause a heart condition named myocardial lipidosis.
In 2016 the FDA banned the use of pure mustard oil because there was no evidence that it could help with improving health or preventing disease in humans. The FDA also made it clear that expressed mustard oil is not allowed to be used as vegetable oil.
Fox News is reporting that according to a study done by the International Journal of Cardiology, the mustard plant can contain up to 40% erucic acid. This chemical has been shown to cause cardiovascular problems in test animals, such as mice and rats. The essential oil of mustard is allowed to be used in many spicy recipes at home and restaurants.
Which Mustard Oil is not Banned in the USA?
Now, you have the option to purchase organic mustard oil without fear of the harmful effects that are often associated with food products. The first and only FDA-approved organic mustard oil is called Yandilla and can be purchased online. Thank goodness this new option has been made available!
Made with specially bred seeds that have been modified to reduce the amount of erucic acid and still maintain the traditional flavor of mustard oil, this oil is a healthier alternative for cooking and general use.
Low Erucic Acid Mustard Oil
The difference between Yandilla and other mustard oils is that Yandilla has a lower erucic acid content and mustard oil has a different sinigrin molecule.
When black, brown, and yellow mustard seeds are ground up, Sinigrin is converted to allyl isothiocyanate. This molecule is the same one found in horseradish and wasabi root that gives them their spicy flavor.
However, yellow mustard seeds produce a less potent molecule known as p-hydroxy benzyl isothiocyanate (known as phytosulfocate) when crushed.
If you take a big whiff of mustard oil, you will immediately experience the burning sensation it leaves in your nose as it irritates your olfactory receptors.
Erucic Acid Side Effects
Mustard oil may contain high levels of erucic acid, a fatty acid that poses a serious risk. This includes ingredients such as olives and rapeseed oil, which can be dangerous in small amounts due to the potential for high cholesterol levels that can lead to heart disease.
According to research on animals, there’s a theory that erucic acid may cause a heart problem called myocardial lipidosis. It’s unclear if this is an effect that humans experience as well, but high levels of erucic acid could pose risks for people with health conditions such as diabetes and obesity.
The FDA has warned people that high levels of erucic acid in mustard oil can be dangerous when it is cooked due to the risk of increased cholesterol levels. People are recommended not to use this product as a cooking oil because of the health risks.