Welcome Summer with Coconut! Part One


Hi everyone! It’s so good to be back to the blog. I’ve missed writing so much. I have started a Biology course for the first summer session at my college, and I am swamped with studying. Because summer sessions go by so fast, each class is Monday-Thursday, 4 hours and 40 minutes long. However we usually go until about 5 hours. Just for one class; it’s crazy. However I have met some really cool people and am very grateful for this fast-paced experience, believe it or not!
Summer is here, yet it’s still as hot as spring where I am. For the first two full summer days it has been raining, giving us a little break from the heat. I will be writing about keeping yourself safe during these hot months, and keeping yourself hydrated with some very cool techniques.
These hot months are the time to enjoy fresh, water containing foods, such as fresh, raw veggies, and raw fruits, such as berries, apples, peaches and pears (watch out with the last few if you have weight or insulin issues). Tomatoes and avocados are also good health promoters this time of the season.
One really cool food you should be consuming right now (in fact, you probably should be consuming it all the time!) is coconut. Coconut is a wonderful health food, providing the body with many essential fatty acids and compounds to help you really recover, restore and/or maintain a high quality of health.
The main health promoting compounds come from the fat of the coconut, which is mainly saturated. Fat is NOT bad, and all fat is not created equal. In fact, the fat in coconut is completely digested in a totally different way than most fats. I would delve into lipid biochemistry, confusing you, my readers, and myself, in the process. So, let’s not go there.
However, the fat in coconut is made out of medium chained triglycerides. These fatty acids are utilized by the body as energy almost immediately after ingestion. Many fats, particularly those found in most vegetable oils and processed foods, are composed of long chained fatty acids, or long chained triglycerides, which are stored by the body much more easily into fat and adipose tissue.
Photo courtesy fda.da.gov.ph
Many studies have shown the metabolic boosting effects of the natural saturated fat found in coconut due to its thyroid promoting compounds. Our thyroid is what regulates our metabolism, and coconut has actually shown to nourish and boost thyroid functions. Take a look at this study which showed that coconut oil supplementation helped a group of women lose weight much sooner than those fed soybean oil. To make matters more interesting, the group who consumed coconut oil had better LDL:HDL profiles, even though they had a higher intake of saturated fat (from the coconut oil). Isn’t it curious as to why many people advocate a low saturated fat diet? Healthy saturated fats do not cause disease. In fact, it might be the lack of them that is what is contributing to America’s health epidemics.
This study is interesting in the fact that it showed that a high fat diet, mainly coming from the saturated fat of coconut oil, helped decrease the harmful a lipoprotein found in our LDL levels. To go even further into saturated fat, and away from coconut (just for a moment), be sure to check out these articles:
The oil in coconut has been shown to be antibacterial, anti fungal and antiviral. The compound lauric acid is said to be antimicrobial, and aids in the killing of bad bacteria and germs in the body. Lauric acid is a saturated fatty acid–human breast milk is another great source of this fat. More studies, articles and doctors are coming out about the benefits of lauric acid (which is then converted to monolaurin in the body) to a developing baby. We cannot produce monolaurin on our own, making it essential for keeping our bodies healthy and able to fight off infections easily.
I will be writing more about coconut in PART TWO, so please, stay tuned! Plus, I will be sharing a recipe that I made today with our featured guest star…coconut, of course. It is incredibly satisfying, beautifying, detoxifying, energizing, tasty, gluten free, grain free, sugar free, protein and fiber packed, full of lauric acids—whew! It is just too good! By the way, that list could probably go on forever; or, at least, until all the words in every language becomes useless beyond repetition.
See you soon.
This is The Healthy Advocate.

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