I have been advising the use of coconut oil for years, but recently there have been many articles in the media ‘debunking’ the health properties of coconut oil. Here is my opinion, as well as link to a couple of articles on the subject which I think is well balanced and based on scientific research.
When choosing an oil/ fat to cook with I do advise using cold pressed coconut oil, it has a high smoking point which means it doesn’t become toxic like olive oil during cooking. it also has a delightful taste and other health benefits such as NOT containing omega 6 fatty acids which leads to heart disease as well as being a good source of medium chain fatty acids. read the below two paragraphs and the links to their sources for a more detailed explanation.
‘The smoking point of olive oil corresponds to 280 degrees Fahrenheit, which is relatively low and implies that olive oil should not be heated at high temperatures. The smoking point of coconut oil is 350 F, making more appropriate for cooking at moderate temperatures. Cooking above the smoking point of an oil is not recommended and can lead to the formation of compounds that could be harmful for your health. Olive oil is usually liquid at room temperature but becomes solid in the refrigerator, while coconut oil is hard when kept in the refrigerator and can be either solid or liquid at room temperatures because of its melting point of 76 F.’
You may have heard that coconut oil is high in saturated fats, artery clogging and dangerous. The truth is, the medium chain fatty acids (MCFA) found in coconut oil are rare in nature and highly health beneficial. MCFA are digested by the body in a different way than the common long chain fatty acids (LCFA) found in most other foods. MCFA are quickly digested, producing energy instead of body fat and arterial plaque like LCFA. About 50 percent of the MFCA in coconut oil is lauric acid, which strengthens the immune system and is also found in human breast milk. Caprylic acid and capric acid are also present, contributing to coconut oil’s antifungal, antiviral and antibacterial properties.
Coconut oil has been touted as a superfood, but is coconut oil just a health fad, and actually bad for us, it is after all very high in saturated fats, traditionally believed to have been the major cause of heart disease. Well, here is my opinion; saturated fats are not necessarily the culprit of heart disease. More and more research now reveals that heart disease is caused mainly by refined & processed foods as well as trans fats and sugar. Humans need some saturated fats, but as with everything we need to keep balance in mind. When choosing coconut oil instead of other vegetable oil such as sunflower oil, canola, corn oil etc, you are still making a healthier choice, click on the link below to see some of the reasons why this is true.
Perhaps it is wise to use coconut oil in small quantities when cooking, and occasionally add it to a coffee when doing intermittent fasting, or add it to a smoothie before a workout. The jury is still out on whether or not it can be labeled as a superfood, but when it comes to eating a clean balanced diet I still believe that coconut oil can most definitely play an important part in living your healthiest life. Quality over quantity is once again true here.
In dedication to your best health