Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How could coconut oil, being a fat, help me to lose weight?
Coconut oil is metabolised by the liver directly into energy. It is not converted by the body into fat but rather increases metabolic function and energy levels, all of which can assist with weight loss. Coconut oil also helps balances blood sugar levels, keeping you feeling nourished and satisfied.
Why do some coconut oils taste and smell so strong?
The aroma and flavour of coconut oil will vary between each brand. Factors that determine this variation include the process used to extract the oil and the actual coconuts used. If the meat is heated or dried, a stronger, even smoky coconut aroma may be more noticeable in the oil.
What makes coconut oil different from olive oil?
Despite both being plant based oils, coconut and olive oil differ in their molecular structures. Coconut oil is a stable saturated fat, whereas olive oil is a more sensitive monounsaturated fat. Olive oil may be damaged by heat or light (causing it to oxidise), whereas coconut oil is not subject to oxidation and maintains its nutritional structure. Both oils contain essential fatty acids and the health benefits associated with this. Olive oil is best consumed only raw, whereas coconut oil can be consumed both raw and in cooked dishes.
But I have heard that saturated fat is bad for you?
There has long been a widespread misconception about saturated fats. Many years ago when the soy bean industry wanted to enter the market with their vegetable oils and margarines, a mass media campaign was launched, proclaiming that saturated fat is unhealthy and raises cholesterol levels. While studies have revealed that animal-based saturated fats are associated with adverse health effects such as raised bad cholesterol levels, this is simply not the case when talking about plant based saturated fats. Fats such as those found in coconut oil, cacao butter and palm kernel oil have actually been associated with a myriad of positive health benefits.
Will it be oily on my skin?
The high concentration of MCFAs in coconut oil, make it an excellent skin moisturiser that is easily absorbed by your skin.
What is the best oil to buy?
Organic, virgin, cold pressed coconut oil ensures that the process has not used any chemicals or damaged the oils essential nutrients.
How long will it last?
Being a very stable saturated fat, coconut oil has a shelf life of up to 2 years from production. It is best kept in dark amber glass and at room temperature.
What is the difference between a fat and oil?
For clarity, there really is no major difference between an oil and a fat; the terms are used interchangeably. The perspective I like to use is that a fat remains solid at room temperature, while oil will remain liquid at room temperature. Coconut oil and coconut butter are therefore the same thing. Creamy white coconut butter becomes clear when heated above 25 degrees Celsius.
Is their any difference between cold pressed and raw coconut oil?
Cold pressed is a method of extracting the oil that the manufacturer uses. The 2 main methods are cold pressing or heating the milk. The cold pressing methods also vary and then so does the quality, taste and price of the oil. Raw is a term used to 'qualify' the degree of heat that the coconut meat is exposed to during the process. Whilst researching I have heard varied degrees that qualify as raw, from 42 to 70 C. Cold pressed may also fit within these temperatures, however the production may follow with a direct heat process that makes it no longer 'raw' at least that is my understanding. The reality is however that coconuts are grown in tropical climate and are mostly exposed to high temperatures, the oil once produced is 92% saturated fat that is so stable it will not oxidise or damage in any way from any heat. The boiling method at time of production may cause damage to nutrients therefore cold pressed is preferred. Fermentation may expose the oil to bacteria, so more controlled environments are also preferred to ensure best quality, purity and freshness.