Last week we started a new series about the Power Up options at Smoothie Shop and today I want to tell you a little more about coconut oil! Coconut oil has long been touted as a health food in the world of natural health and wellness, but in the last several years, it has become a superstar in more mainstream nutrition news. I love to see that because it translates to research funding! And the research is pretty clear, this oil has a multitude of benefits!
Coconut oil is an excellent source of medium chain triglyceride (aka MCT, sound familiar?) and they have very unique properties compared to other fats. They are processed in your body a little differently because they are rapidly absorbed and more quickly metabolized (burned). Instead of being stored as fat, MCTs are available for immediate use as energy. This is particularly helpful for athletes for a ready energy source that isn’t sugar. This unique absorption process is also why they are able to provide some unique health benefits. They can help decrease hunger, to improve weight loss and can also increase the amount of fat you burn through the day, even helping to target abdominal fat! It can improve cholesterol by increasing HDL (good) cholesterol levels for improved heart health. Coconut oil also contains lauric acid and its metabolized version, monolaurin. Both of these can kill harmful pathogens like bacteria, fungi, and viruses, which means that coconut oil can be helpful in preventing infections as well.
There is a good reason coconut oil has reached superstar status, these are some incredible benefits for overall health!
Sounds good, right? It is! It also has a light taste that blends well with sweet flavors as well as fruits. Try adding it to your next smoothie and see what you think!