Heard the hype about this tropical oil? Here’s four ways to use coconut oil that can benefit your health.
Coconut oil is great for your skin and delicious for cooking. Find out why and how coconut oil is good for you with advice from Sarah Oulahen, a naturopathic doctor from SOW Health Naturopathic and Chiropody Clinic in Toronto.
1. Coconut oil is good for your overall health
Coconut oil is a source of essential fats—a particular type of fat called a medium-chain triglyceride—that’s easily utilized by our bodies, acts like fuel specifically for the brain and has been shown to decrease blood sugar levels.
“It’s an anti-inflammatory essential fatty acid that’s key for the health of all cells in your body and the overall health of all of your membranes,” says Oulahen.
2. Coconut oil is ideal for cooking
Saturated fats are essential fats the body needs. A medium-chain triglyceride fat especially, is easily digestible because it doesn’t require liver or gallbladder function. “We are becoming more aware that fats don’t make you fat. Your body actually needs and readily utilizes fats,” explains Oulahen.
“People think that a saturated fat is a bad thing in terms of cholesterol, but it actually will help with controlling good levels of cholesterol and can help with weight-loss as well,” says Oulahen.
There are two main types of coconut oil to cook with: virgin and refined. The virgin coconut oil maintains the taste of coconut in the dish, while the refined coconut oil won’t have the coconut smell or taste to it, but will still maintain all its benefits. Coconut oil is also great for cooking at high temperatures because it has a higher smoke point than olive oil.