Almonds are available in two major types: sweet almond and bitter almond. A lot of people have no idea about the difference between almond oil and sweet almond oil. Gladly, today we are going to debunk all these differences, so you know which one to use in a regular diet.
Sweet almonds are considered safe and are the ones you eat as a snack or use in cooking. The sweet varieties frequently grow in South Africa, Australia, the United States, and the Mediterranean. Bitter almonds are those used in oils or food flavorings.
The bitter varieties contain cyanide precursors, and you may not find them commercially in the United States. Bitter almonds yield between four and nine milligrams of hydrogen cyanide per almond. Studies have shown that the bitter almond types comprise 42 times higher cyanide amounts than the traces available in sweet almonds.
Bitter Almonds & Sweet Almonds—The Differences
Besides taste, the bitter almond and sweet almond have other distinct differences that make their identification easy. Bitter almonds contain prussic traces in their raw form, which makes them lethal to humans and animals. Through heat and processing, you can destroy the toxicity of this poison.
Bitter and non-bitter almonds are similar when it comes to physical appearance. The two almond varieties come in brown skin, and their insides are off-white. Typically, the bitter types are smaller and more pointed than the non-bitter ones. They equally highlight an acidic and tart flavor.
The sweet almond varieties have numerous culinary uses. You can eat it in a raw state or use it to cook dishes like marzipan, French macaroons, nougat, and almond butter. People in India and Pakistan use sweet almond in curries while the Chinese use it as a favorite dessert – often mixed with milk and served hot.
Vegans and lactose-intolerant people can make the sweet almond into a milk product, which bears a close resemblance to soy. Almond flour is suitable for those of us with special dietary requirements because it is gluten-free and has almost zero carbohydrates.
Historically, people used bitter almond in small amounts for flavoring. It goes well with such dishes as Italian amaretti and almond syrup. However, its use has been discontinued in the modern day because it is potentially toxic.
Sweet and bitter almond oils have distinct differences from a skin care point of view. Sweet almond serves as a perfect lubricant, which is ideal for dry and sensitive skin. This medium-light oil gets absorbed quickly, so it proves handy for massage and facial care applications.
Sweet almond types mainly contain olein, linoleic acid, and glucosides. This almond type is a rich source of vitamins, minerals, and proteins hence ideal for nourishing and revitalizing. It is one of the most adaptable sin care oils in existence today.
Bitter almond oil is an essential oil. It is not suitable for use as an emollient or in any way for skin care. Bitter almond proves useful only for its incredible flavor or strong almond scent.
Unlike other essential oils – such as Lavender essential oil – bitter almond has no aromatherapy benefits. The lavender essential oil is excellent for skin care as it has both a pleasant scent and relaxing qualities. Customers only love bitter almond for its wonderful almond flavor.