One of the healthiest foods you probably aren’t eating is the coconut, which was has been a major part of my daily anti-cancer diet since 2004.
Now I’m sure you’ve had an Almond Joy, a pina colada, or coconut cake at some point, but very few people I’ve met have ever actually eaten a fresh raw coconut, besides that one time in Jamaica of course.
The reason most of us aren’t eating coconuts is:
1) We don’t live in a tropical paradise, with coconuts growing on trees in the backyard.
2) They aren’t a staple in industrialized nation cuisine.
3) They’re kinda hard to find.
4) How the flip do you get them open!
Here’s why you need to eat coconuts:
Coconuts are rich in this really awesome stuff called Lauric Acid, a medium chain fatty acid that is anti-viral, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial. The highest concentration of lauric acid and medium chain fatty acids is found in two places: coconut oil and human breast milk. So unless you’re still nursing, I’m going to recommend you add some coconut to your diet.
My favorite way to eat coconut is to make this Coconut Fruit Smoothie. (The link will take you to a post that explains what kind to buy and how to get them open)
Coconut, Palm, and Palm Kernal Oil are the healthiest cooking oils on the planet. They are WAY healthier than any vegetable oil. Don’t get me wrong, olive oil is great. I put it on my salads everyday. It’s just not as good to cook with as those three tropical oils. The reason coconut oil is superior for cooking is it is very resistant to high heat, which means frying with it doesn’t change its molecular properties or reduce its nutritional value.
Once upon a time coconut oil was a staple ingredient in modern food, but it got a bad rap for several decades because it is high in saturated fat. This was believed to be unhealthy based on flawed research done on hydrogenated coconut oil and because it raised cholesterol. They didn’t know that it was only raising HDL, the good cholesterol! Some conspiracy theorists will tell you that segments of the food industry promoted a negative pr campaign against tropical oils in order to replace them with vegetable oils from American crops: soy, corn, canola, cottonseed, etc.
Not that far-fetched, really.
Regardless, that’s when the widespread use of hydrogenated vegetable oils began. They have since been proven to be horribly unhealthy, but somehow they didn’t get researched back then…
If you haven’t already read this somewhere else, let me be the first to tell you, margarine is some freaky stuff. It’s like spreadable edible plastic. It won’t rot and bugs won’t touch it. Stop eating it immediately. Also get rid of any food product containing hydrogenated or partially-hydrogenated oils. This deserves an entire post of its own, but in the meantime, know this: Hydrogenated oils have trans fats which are toxic adulterated fatty acids that are contributors to disease. They can actually make you sick and fat. Google it.
Back to Coconut Oil:
In recent years coconut oil has made a comeback, as scientific research has proven that saturated fat from coconuts is in fact super healthy. Saturated fats from plant sources like coconuts, olives, avocados, and some nuts are good for our cells, bones, blood, cardiovascular system, liver, immune system, and brain. Coconut oil has even been shown to prevent colon and breast cancer in laboratory tests. It also assists in weight loss, which is why islanders who consume a lot of coconut in their diet are rarely overweight. And coconut oil also great for your skin and hair.
Coconut oil has bee shown to prevent and/or reverse Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases. Dr. Mary Newport M.D. has a site calledcoconutketones.com. It’s a great resource for more information about this.
Cooking with coconut oil is amazing. It smells soooo good and adds delicious new flavor to everything from scrambled eggs to stir fry. Cook with it once and you’ll be hooked.
Somedays I just eat a spoonful of coconut oil or coconut butter for a quick fix.
We’re so crazy about coconut oil, we buy Giant Tubs of the stuff!