Coconut oil is considered by many experts to be today’s must-have super food. It’s been used by the peoples of South East Asia for thousands of years, both as a cooking ingredient and a medicine.
Once discovered by the Europeans, demand went through the roof, and coconut plantations began to spring up all over the world. After some dubious studies in the 1950s, the oil garnered a bad reputation, but today scientists are re-examining the chemical properties of this remarkable plant and discovering what it can do.
1. Nutritional benefits
The reason coconut oil fell out of favour in the 1950s was because of studies into saturated fats. Led by nutritionist Ancel Keys, the studies found that saturated fat was the leading cause of heart problems, and was recommended to be removed from people’s diets.
Not only have these studies been disproven, but it has come to light that they were funded by sugar and cereal companies, in order to point the blame somewhere else. Now new studies are finding that saturated fats are infinitely more complex than previously thought, with many different types, each having different effects on the human body.
While it’s true that coconut oil has a high percentage of saturated fat, fat is an essential part of our diet, helping the body absorb fat-soluble vitamins such as A, D, E and K. The type of saturated fat found in coconut oil is also different, being mostly made up of lauric acid.
Lauric acid is a medium-chain triglyceride (MCT), which is considered one of the “good” types of cholesterol. Some studies have shown that MCTs can help burn calories, thus promoting weight loss. Because of this, coconut oil is used widely by body builders and endurance athletes.
2. Coconut oil for cooking
Coconut oil covers all the bases when used for cooking. It has a high smoking point, which helps to maintain its nutritional value. Like the other oils high in saturated fat, it has a long shelf-life, allowing transportation and storage for long distances and times.
And like butter, coconut oil is solid at room temperature, meaning it can be used for baking, frying, or oiling pans. When melted it gives off a beautiful aroma, one of the reasons it’s so attractive to cook with.
3. Coconut oil for weight loss
Not only can coconut oil help burn calories faster, but it also helps you to lose weight in other ways. Studies have shown that coconut oil reduces your appetite, making you eat less without even trying.
With coconut oil being made up of medium chained fatty acids, the body metabolizes them differently, burning them off faster, increasing metabolism. This increase also helps burn calories when the body is at rest, another advantage when trying to control weight.
Coconut oil has also been proven to fight belly fat. In this one study, 40 women were given either 30 grams (2 tablespoons) of coconut oil or soybean oil for 4 weeks, resulting in overall belly fat loss for the coconut oil group.
4. Coconut oil kills fungal infections
Coconut oil contains anti-microbial properties, and can kill the causes of fungal infections such as ringworm, thrush or athlete’s foot. The traditional Indian practice of swishing coconut oil around the mouth is said to prevent tooth decay and bad breath.
Monolaurin, an ingredient in coconut oil, has long been recognized for its bug-fighting properties. It is found in breast milk, perhaps in part to help protect the developing baby from infection. With the rise of antibiotic resistant germs, recent studies have looked at the effectiveness of coconut oil as a new way to fight these pathogens.
5. Coconut oil for skin and hair
Coconut oil is very much in demand in the cosmetics industry. One of the primary ingredients in many hand and face creams, lotions, and soaps, coconut oil is a billion-dollar industry around the globe.
And it works like a charm on your hair! Because of the lauric acid’s low molecular weight and straight linear chain, the protein can get inside the hair shaft, reducing protein loss for both damaged and undamaged hair.
Olivado’s latest delight!
We are proud to announce our latest addition to the Olivado family – our Natural Liquid Coconut Oil
Pressed and processed without chemicals, our Natural Liquid Coconut Oil captures the nutritional goodness from coconuts in a convenient liquid form.
It’s the first of its kind in the world, with a handy “pop up” pour nozzle attached to the bottle. Containing 40% more medium chain triglycerides than virgin coconut oil, and in liquid form it’s easy to pour into smoothies, dressings, and to start off your winter curries and soups!
Don’t forget to check out our natural coconut cooking oil, which is extracted by mechanical means with low heat and then gently refined. This cutting-edge cold extraction process preserves the natural goodness of the coconut flesh without using chemicals or heat.
The raw white flesh of the coconut is cold pressed, and the oil is centrifugally separated and filtered, producing a fresh creamy coconut taste, perfect for all cooking and baking requirements.
If you would like to see the rest of our product range, please click here, or if you would like to contact us, please click here. Our friendly and experienced staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have.