We’ve been talking, tweeting, blogging and posting to all of our coconut oil fans about all of the benefits of this super-food when incorporated into your daily diet. But it always helps to have someone else reinforcing the same message. (You know, like when you tell your significant other something but he only believes it when someone else tells him the SAME thing.) This month, we got some help from one of our favorite magazines, Shape.
Matt Kadey, MS, RD shared his expertise with the monthly fitness magazine on why coconut oil is a good fat to incorporate into your meals.
Yes, coconut oil is almost 90 percent saturated fat, but not all sat fats are created equal. “The saturated fat in coconut oil is mostly lauric acid, a medium-chain saturated fatty acid that appears to have a more neutral effect on heart health when compared to longer-chain saturated fats found in meats and dairy products,” says Wendy Bazilian, R.D., author of The SuperFoodsRx Diet.
This makes sense considering citizens of nations that consume prodigious amounts of coconut products, such as Sri Lanka, have lower rates of heart disease than Americans. Some research even suggests that coconut oil can paradoxically improve cholesterol numbers by revving up enzymes in the body that breakdown fats.
Bazilian adds that medium-chain fats are metabolized more easily into energy in the liver, meaning they may be less likely to be stored as extra padding on your thighs if you keep your overall calories in check.
“Up to 1 to 2 tablespoons of coconut oil a day, depending on individual calorie needs, can be a healthy and tasty addition to your diet when replacing other less-healthy calories,” Bazilian says.
Just another reason we love cooking with coconut oil – because who doesn’t want something that tastes good and does good for your body?