My thoughts on Coconut Oil
If you’ve been on the internet at all in the past 6 months, you’ve probably heard about coconut oil. It’s being touted as having miracle properties- aiding in weight loss, digestion, lowering cholesterol, even curing Alzheimer’s. I fell pretty quick for this craze- it’s very popular with the paleo crowd- and have used it a few times a week since. I haven’t noticed any significant changes, and I also am not a huge fan of the taste in most recipes (though coconut shrimp, and curried chicken work well as do most baked goods).
I went looking for some scientific proof recently for all of these claims. I mean, there had to be proof right? Even Dr. Oz says it’s one of the best fats out there for you. 🙂 And what I found was very little hard evidence that coconut oil was any better for you than any other type of fat.
Here are some of the articles I read:
What I’ve realized is this. There is very little research done on coconut oil and it’s affect on anything but cholesterol levels (and by the way: coconut oil raises your good cholesterol and your bad), and even that research is pretty scarce. There are a lot of claims made, but very little proof, so don’t go throwing all your olive oil out just yet. 🙂
That said, I have no fear of fat whatsoever. In my weight loss journey I have learned two things. 1- our bodies need fat; especially for fat-soluble vitamins. 2- fat keeps you fuller longer. That’s not to say you should start downing the butter because fat is also very calorie heavy, BUT you should have a little fat with each meal. It helps your body absorb some of the goodies in your food and it keeps you fuller longer.
So if you like coconut oil, use it, just not huge globs of it and not for every meal. Your best bet is to alternate your fats between meals. Nuts, avocados, olive oil, even butter (grass fed and organic please!!) have their place in a healthy diet. And eating a variety will ensure you reap all the benefits with the least amount of negative repercussions.
Now, on my journey with using coconut oil (and you’ve probably heard this as well), I found that it can be used topically. This is where coconut oil excels for me. I use it EVERY DAY as a lotion after I hop out of the shower. If you have recently or are currently working to lose weight, you’ll love to hear that coconut oil is amazing for stretch marks. I’ve noticed that it has helped to reduce the severity of the ones I have and has kept me from gaining too many new ones. I really can’t express how much I love using coconut oil topically. It goes on great, soaks right in, and makes every part of me feel silky smooth. I also use it as a hair mask once a week. After yoga on Sundays I slather it on and let it sit for an hour before showering. It helps with frizz and breakage especially since I live in a ponytail. 🙂
Do you use coconut oil? And how so? How do you like it?
Love and Joy,
PS. Get ready for tomorrow’s Workout Wednesday!!!