Oleic Acid Molecule

C18 trans fatty acid

Oleic Acid Molecule-- Space Fill Model

To View the OleicAcid Molecule in 3D using Jsmol

Oleic acid is a monounsaturated fatty acid found in various animal and vegetable sources. It has the empirical formula C18H34O2. Its IUPAC name is cis-9-octadecenoic acid, and its lipid shorthand name is 18:1 cis-9. The saturated form of this acid is stearic acid.

The dominant use of oleic acid is as its sodium salt, which a major component of many kinds of soap. Small amounts of oleic acid are used as an excipient in pharmaceuticals, oleic acid is used as an emulsifying or solubilizing agent in aerosol products.

Oleic Acid Molecular Struture

Oleic Acid Molecular Structure

Oleic acid comprises 55-80% of olive oil. Triglyceride esters of oleic acid compose the majority of olive oil, although there may be less than 2.0% as free acid in the virgin olive oil, with higher concentrations making the olive oil inedible. It also makes up 59-75% of pecan oil, 36-67% of peanut oil, 15-20% of grape seed oil, and sesame oil.

Health Benefits

Numerous studies have shown that high olive oil intake reduces blood pressure (BP). Recent studies indicate that it the oleic acid content that is responsible for the reduction in blood pressure induced by olive oil see PNAS article

Physical Data

Appearance: Pale yellow or brownish yellow oily liquid with lard-like odor
Solubility: Insoluble in water
Melting Point: 15.3 degrees C
Boiling Point: 360 degrees C
Specific Gravity: 0.895

Reference

NIST Chemistry Webbook