Healthy and versatile: coconut oil for slimming and as natural cosmetics
In some regions of the world, coconut oil has been used in the kitchen for thousands of years. In Germany, it has only moved in in recent years. The oil is also used in natural cosmetics. A dispute has recently flared up about the health benefits of coconut oil.
Coconut oil is also becoming increasingly popular in Germany
When it comes to which are the most valuable edible oils for kitchen and health, some emphasize the health-promoting effect of linseed oil. However, many mainly use rapeseed oil, which is now even more popular with Germans than sunflower and olive oil. In recent years, coconut oil has also entered the local kitchen. It should be ideal for roasting and cooking and also serve health. But what can the oil really do?
A few years ago, coconut oil was almost unknown in German cuisine, but it can now also be found as a new "superfood" in the local supermarkets and drugstores.
Coconut oil has been used as natural cosmetics for a long time. It is a popular home remedy for dry hair and relieves sunburn.
Because of the lauric acid it contains, to which many pathogens and parasites such as mosquitoes or ticks are sensitive, coconut oil is also used as an insect repellent.
But the oil is especially popular because of its taste and health benefits. In the end, however, the positive effects on our bodies had been questioned.
Health benefits questioned
For example, the magazine "Erntaus Umschau" (October 2016 edition) reported that coconut oil is also no healthier than other oils. Therefore, there is no reason to consume it in large quantities.
The magazine referred to a report by the scientists Dr. Stacey Lockyer and Sara Stanner from the British Nutrition Foundation.
The science journalist Dipl. Oec. troph. However, Ulrike Gonder expresses criticism of the criticism of coconut oil on her website. According to the expert, the work of the women scientists "partly relies on outdated arguments".
According to Gonder, that coconut oil is rich in saturated fatty acids and is therefore harmful to health is "one of the oldest arguments against coconut oil, which, however, does not make it any more true".
Coconut fat actually consists of around 92 percent saturated fat - but concluding from this fact that it is important to health is scientifically unsustainable.
The expert referred to several studies and meta-analyzes, which conclude that saturated fatty acids per se have no causal relationship to the occurrence of heart attacks or other cardiovascular diseases.
More medium chain fatty acids than any other oil
A current contribution by the "Norddeutscher Rundfunk" (NDR) highlights the health benefits of coconut oil. The information comes, among others, from the oecotrophologist Ulrike Gonder.
The valuable coconut oil is said to contain more medium chain triglycerides (MCT) than any other vegetable fat or oil.
These fatty acids are processed in the liver into so-called ketones and from there they are transported to the brain as high-quality energy suppliers for the nerve cells.
According to the NDR report, studies suggest that coconut oil can slow the progression of brain diseases such as Alzheimer's.
Lose weight with coconut oil
Medium-chain fatty acids also include lauric acid, which is also considered a slimming product.
In fact, studies have shown that medium-chain triglycerides help you lose weight, but only short-term effects have been examined.
Apparently, weight loss only works if there are fewer carbohydrates and more healthy fats like omega-3 fatty acids on the menu at the same time.
According to NDR, for example, potatoes fried in coconut oil start, but wild salmon and vegetables in coconut oil provide a healthy oil mix.
No harmful trans fats
Furthermore, coconut oil is the only gently pressed vegetable oil that does not develop harmful trans fats under high heat.
In addition to the health benefits, coconut oil can also impress with its taste. As an ingredient in exotic dishes such as curries, like coconut milk, it can contribute to a pleasantly fresh, sweet taste and enrich the kitchen.
When buying coconut oil, care should be taken to ensure that the words “native” appear on the glass, that it comes from organic farming and was pressed from ripe fruit as soon as possible after harvesting. Oil from unripe nuts that have been stored for months tastes slightly rancid.
By the way: In contrast to coconut oil, which is also solid at room temperature and looks like white spreadable fat, coconut oil is mostly processed industrially.
After heating, hardening and bleaching, this is tasteless and is used in the food industry as a substitute for palm oil. (ad)