The Power of Coconut Oil
It wasn’t that long ago that coconut oil was maligned because of its fat content. It was even worse when it was found that coconut oil had significant amounts of saturated fat. It was automatically labeled as one of the worst oils to cook with. But the history behind it can’t be wrong.
About 4,000 years ago, coconut oil was prolifically used in the Americas, Africa, and most of Asia. In Ayurveda medicine, it was used in all areas of the body and early explorers commented on the how communities across the Pacific that made coconut oil a part of their daily routines. During the second world war, coconut oil was prominently used in England as well as the U.S. but that changed when coronary heart disease became a significant cause of adult deaths. Researchers surmised that the regular ingestion of cholesterol led to blocked arteries contributing to heart disease. Even though scientists pointed the finger to saturated fat and cholesterol from animal sources as the culprit, all foods with saturated fats were lumped together and attention was turned to corn and soybean oils as healthier alternatives.
Good Fats Help You Lose Weight
Modern research has turned the tide. Soybean oil, which was inserted in many different foods, was found to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. In order to increase shelf life and save money, many manufacturers turned to oil hydrogenation and much of the soy in processed foods was hydrogenated. However, research studies confirmed that foods containing partially hydrogenated oils had significant levels of trans fats, which increased cardiovascular disease risk. Researchers turned back to other oil alternatives including coconut oil and found that it was not as bad as was once thought. Coconut oil has medium chain trans (MCT) fatty acid that increases good cholesterol to help improve the LDL/HDL ratio. The oil also helps the body handle blood sugar better by slowing digestion and helping sugar to stay steady. This is great news for diabetics on multiple fronts because better blood sugar means more efficient burning of fats and less weight gain.
Great for Cooking
Unlike many other oils, coconut oil is great for cooking. It has a higher smoke point than soy oil, which means that it retains its nutrients while cooking at higher temperatures. It’s also great for skin and hair. Coconut oil contains vitamin E, which protects the skin from toxins. The key is to use organic coconut oil that’s got most of its nutrients intact. So whether you’re eating it or using on your body, the benefits of coconut oil can’t be denied.