Once upon a time in these United States coconut oil was much aligned as an evil artery clogging substance. Today we know better. Much better. Coconut oil and the many byproducts of the dear coconut are very healthful. According to a report published at the National Institutes of Health, it’s good for heart health and even Alzheimer’s.
NOT ALL SATURATED FAT IS THE SAME
Coconut oil was slandered because of its saturated fat content (associated with clogging arteries). But not all saturated fats are the same. There are short chain, medium chain and long chain – each are absorbed differently in the body. Coconut oil is a medium chain fatty acids – close to that found in human breast milk. Compared to long chain, medium chain are digested more quickly, are less taxing to the liver, and more immediately converted into energy. Long chain takes longer to absorb and often leave you sluggish –think cheese and red meat.
For more information check out the Coconut Research Center.
A MULTIPURPOSE HEALTHY OIL
From your hair to your heart coconut oil can do you good. These are just a few of the many health benefits of this natural food:
- Provides a nutritional source of quick energy.
- Boosts energy and endurance, enhancing physical and athletic performance.
- Improves digestion and absorption of other nutrients including vitamins, minerals, and amino acids.
- Works as an excellent mouthwash
For gleaming moisturized skin and hair – use the same stuff you cook with – no need to buy a separate product though it will be easier if you keep one container in the bath and one in the kitchen. Coconut oil also has a high smoke point, so great for stir fry. I also recently discovered coconut vinegar that touts more antioxidants that apple cider vinegar.
AH, REFRESHING COCONUT WATER
Coconut water is sold everywhere these days. Health food stores sell them for upwards of $2-3 for 8oz. Head to an Asian or Latino grocer and you’ll find them for less than half and equally as hydrating with tons of potassium. I love getting raw green coconuts for both the water and coconut jelly (believed to be an aphrodisiac) but not having a machete handy, I find them sadly impossible to open. If you’ve got tips for opening raw coconuts, please share!
Otherwise, I will just have to move to tropics.
Have fun in the kitchen with these tasty coconut recipes.