Coconut oil has regained popularity as thermally stable, low smoke point and beneficial cooking oil. Coconuts are extremely favorable for health and well-being and the tree is often referred to as ‘the tree of life’ because of its ability to produce food, drink, medicine, shelter and clothes. Coconut oil has numerous applications apart from cooking, some of which include using the oil to moisturise skin, fight against acne, as a mouth wash, wound salve or for Ayuverdic oil pulling.
With a smoke point of 350°F, coconut oil can be safely used for frying and baking, as when oils are cooked beyond the smoke point, oxidization occurs and they release unhealthy free radicals into the air and food. Smoke literally rises from the oil and the chemical structure changes, releasing cancer causing compounds.
Studies have shown that rates of chronic illness are lower in indigenous people who consume a lot of coconut oil. However it must be noted that conditions like coronary artery disease increase when coconut oil is consumed with highly processed Western diets.
With supportive MCT’s like lauric acid, coconut oil can balance blood sugar levels and hormones as well as assist with weight loss and a reduced waist line. It has anti-microbial properties and can lower the risk of heart attack or stroke, as it maintains good cholesterol by raising HDL levels.
Coconut oils caprylic acid content can boost the immune system and reduce candida, it is antiviral, antifungal, antimicrobial, and antibacterial. Recent studies have shown that coconut oil may be beneficial in maintaining bone structure and prevent bone loss further to fighting inflammation by supporting a healthy liver and kidneys as well as assist with brain function in Alzheimer’s patients. It may also have the potential to be an anti-depressant and aid against the effects of a stressful lifestyle.