Oil and fat together are called lipid. Oil and fat are the mixture of the esters of higher fatty acids and glycerol (chemically they are also known as Glycerol tri-ester or glyceride of higher fatty acids). The difference between fat and oil are given below:
- The esters of saturated acids [Palmitic acid (C15H31CO2H) & Stearic acid (C17H35CO2H)] is solid fat and the ester of unsaturated acids (Oleic acid (C17H33CO2H) & Linoleic acid (C17H31CO2H)] is oil.
- Fat is produced in animals whereas oil is produced in plants.
- At room temperature (20°C) fat is solid but oil is liquid.
- Fat contains more cholesterol and so it is not easily digestible, while oil contains less cholesterol and therefore is easier to digest.
Importance of Oils & Fats:
- They act as a source of high energy (1 gm oil/fat = 9 cal energy)
- By reaction with alkali, oil & fat produce soap & glycerin.
- Oils & fats are used in paints, varnish & cosmetics.
- Oil is easily digestible than fat & oil contains low cholesterol.