Old Science: coconut oil is bad for you
For decades and decades, scientists and doctors have claimed that coconut oil is bad for you because it is high in saturated fat and raises your LDL cholesterol levels. They claim that products high in saturated fat are contributors to heart disease, cancer, and obesity, therefore coconut oil should be avoided. To this day most doctors, scientists, and government agencies encourage people to use high omega 6 soybean oil, corn oil, canola oil, and margarine instead — which is honestly laughable to me.
America needs an oil change!
Research shows that a healthy diet should have an Omega-6 to Omega-3 ratio between 1:1 and 4:1. The average American is sitting at a ratio of about 15:1! This is due to grains high in Omega-6 fats, and high Omega-6 conventional butter (grass-fed not the case), soy oil, corn oil, canola oil, and low-oleic safflower and sunflower oils. Too many Omega-6 fats in the diet increase risk for heart disease and cancer, not too mention causes an inflammatory response in the body. To add insult to injury, most of the soy, corn, and canola oils contain GMOs, which can cause health problems from serious GI dysfunction to sterility. Coconut oil has a low Omega-6 content, having a favorable 3:1 Omega ratio, and does not contain GMOs.
Other benefits of coconut oil
- Medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) are metabolized differently than longer chain fats. MCTs are used as a quick source of energy, turned into ketone bodies. This can have a positive effect on people with brain disorders like seizures, epilepsy, and alzheimer’s.
- MCTs can increase energy expenditure by up to 5% compared to the same amount of calories from longer chain fats. Over time this can add up to significant weight loss.
- The lauric acid in coconut oil can kill bacteria, viruses, and fungi, helping to stave off infection. It’s been proven to kill staph and candida.
- The fatty acids in coconut oil can control appetite and maintain healthy insulin levels.
- coconut oil improves blood cholesterol levels, increasing HDL and decreasing LDL levels. New science is showing that saturated fats do not have a negative effect on the blood lipid profile as previously thought.
- Coconut oil can be used to improve hair and skin, and even has a natural SPF 4 sunscreen.
- Can be used as a mouthwash. Swirl in mouth for 10 minutes to naturally remove plaque and bad bacteria.
- A wonderful dairy-free alternative to butter in stir-fry and other recipes.
- Use as a natural shaving cream and body lotion.
- When supplemented regularly, coconut oil is a great anti-inflammatory, soothing arthritis pain and improving gut health.
- Can stimulate hair growth when rubbed into the scalp.
- Increases the absorption of calcium and magnesium.
- Can be used topically to relieve itch from mosquito bites, chicken pox, and poison ivy.
- Research has shown it can be helpful in calming autoimmune conditions.
I personally use coconut oil every day as a natural body lotion and hair moisturizer. It was also great during my pregnancy to prevent/lessen stretch marks. I love using it on sweet potatoes and in stir-fries as a dairy-free choice. For the best price, I buy it at Costco. It’s around $25 for a 78oz tub that lasts months!