Monday, April 27, 2015

What's with the Coconut Oil Hype?

I am not sure where this whole coconut oil craze has emerged from on its high horse, but I am getting a little annoyed with all of its undue hype.

Hint: The secret miracle of coconut oil is that it is not a miracle.

I have previously blogged about cooking oils and briefly touched on coconut oil, but I feel with all of this flurry of coconut oil rubbish, it is time to revisit it. I mean, this coconut oil craze even has the audacity to infiltrate my office via an intern. I have managed to bite my tongue on the issue (for once in my life, right mom?) thus far, but I at least wanted to take the opportunity to educate the rest of you. 

The Claims
Most coconut oil zealots claim that it is some sort of magical cure all. Case in point, this infographic…

Now, I will give them the claims about improved skin care and hair care because that is derived from applying it directly to your skin or hair; the rest are from consuming it and are unproven and in some instances just down right ridiculous. I mean coconut oil preventing type II diabetes and curing heart disease…really?!? My favorite line is under the Infections box, “may destroy bacterial & viral infections like…hepatitis C and even HIV.”

Is coconut oil healthy?
Just about all of the health claims regarding coconut oil are not supported by (good and unbiased) research. To help cover some of these points, watch this video…

Should you be using coconut oil?
I am going to give you three simple rules to help you determine if you should be using coconut oil or not.
  1. Would you add butter to it? If you would not add butter to whatever food it is that you are thinking about putting coconut oil in, then you are just adding in unnecessary calories,thus being silly.  
  2. Are you lactose intolerant or have issues with dairy? If you answered yes, I will let you use coconut oil instead of butter and not judge you for it.
  3. Do you think you are better than everybody else? If you answered yes, you may want to consider using coconut oil, but I will judge you.

Breaking it down
Don’t feel pressured to use coconut oil because it is trendy; it is not really any healthier than butter. Maybe Paula Dean has been on to something all these years…

Next time you hear one of your friends or a random stranger raving about how they put coconut oil in their kale, apple, banana, chia seed, flax seed, hemp milk smoothie, just ask them why they didn't use butter instead of the coconut oil and watch their reaction. If you really want to see some positive changes in your health, eat your fruits and vegetables. Now if you will excuse me, I need to go see what other nutrition advice I can glean from Paula Dean and make the intern wash her mouth out with soap. Until next time!

Keep it Fresh,
Keep it Green,


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