Contrary to what we have been told for so very long, saturated fat is not quite the villain that we once thought it was, especially in the form of coconut oil. There are many benefits to coconut oil, but don’t think of it as the one “magic pill” for curing everything that ails us. It can be used as part of a healthy balanced diet.
Coconut fats have special fats that are called Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs), the principal one in coconut oil is Lauric Acid. There is some evidence that when the liver breaks these MCTs down, it can improve the effi ciency of burning energy. One 2009 study published in the journal Lipids showed evidence that abdominal fat was reduced with consumption of coconut oil. That same study, and several others, showed that it increases HDL cholesterol thereby improving the total cholesterol ratio.
Lauric Acid also has been shown to have antimicrobial properties, possibly helping our immune system fight viruses and fungi, as well. Positive antioxidant action in our body is something that we should all be trying to achieve, which is why a large consumption of fruits and veggies is essential in our diet. Coconut oil contributes to this, as well, helping our body keep those free radicals in check.
Cooking with coconut oil is also a great option because it doesn’t break down too quickly with the high heats of sautéing foods and is a good alternate fat source in baking.
Organic, virgin coconut oil is the best option for the purest quality product, as it is the least refined. Trying new things to help improve our overall health and well being is a good idea and gives our diet a good variety of nutrient sources.