Coconut Oil - Healthy
official opening of the summer season coming up this week-end, it's a good
time to get ready for the beach. Don't forget the sun block! While you're
enjoying the summer sun (and browning yourself safely!) consider that
tropical oils like cocoa butter and coconut oil make better
ingredients for tanning lotion than they do in the foods you eat.
Fat in Foods
labels is a good place to start educating yourself on the fat in foods. Food
labels in the U.S. provide information on the total fat, and the breakdown
of saturated fat, polyunsaturated fat, and monounsaturated fat, as well as
cholesterol content. It can be a little confusing though because:
are labeled "cholesterol-free" or "no cholesterol"
may contain a lot of saturated fat.
labeled "low fat" may contain a lot of cholesterol
advertise "cooked in 100% vegetable oil" may contain a lot of
For people who
are trying to eat less fat or trying to choose better types of fats,
interpreting labels can be a real challenge. Misleading advertising and
poorly interpreted research studies make it more difficult to choose the
right foods. So, here are some basic rules to remember:
and saturated fat should be limited for good heart health. Do not let
people tell you that you don't need to watch the amount of cholesterol
in the diet! Too much cholesterol and too much saturated fat raise the
blood cholesterol - it's just that saturated fat is more potent. Both
dietary cholesterol and saturated fat block the LDL receptors in the
liver that help remove cholesterol in the blood and this raises blood
cholesterol levels. The expert panel of the National Cholesterol
Education Program suggests that people limit cholesterol to 300 mg or
less per day, and those at risk should limit cholesterol to 200 mg per
is only found in animal foods, or foods that contain animal foods. So,
if it swims, walks, crawls, or flies, it contains cholesterol. No
plant foods contain cholesterol unless they are mixed with animal foods.
So, baked goods that contain egg yolks or dairy products contain
cholesterol from the animal foods in them.
many types of saturated fat. Most animal fats (butter, lard, meat fat,
dairy fat) contain a lot of artery-blocking saturated fat. But worse
still are the highly saturated fats in tropical oils such as coconut oil
and palm oil, found in many processed foods like baked goods,
store-bought snacks and desserts.
or partial hydrogenation is a process that makes some good fats bad. It
improves the shelf life of fat and changes the texture of the fat, but
it makes the food more harmful to eat. This process also increases
"trans fats" which acts like cholesterol and naturally
saturated fats to raise cholesterol levels in the blood. Avoid these
To keep the cholesterol, saturated fat, and total fat within healthy
limits, follow your personal diet plan. It is designed to help you eat
the right amount and the right type of animal foods so that you get the
protein and other nutrients you need without raising your blood
cholesterol levels. Your guidelines for fats will help you choose good
fats and keep your fat intake within the amounts that are right for your
own calorie needs, whether you are trying to lose weight, gain muscle,
or maintain weight through a healthy diet.
This summer, use tropical fats to help block the sun, not your arteries!