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Coconut Oil-Part II

Coconut oil:  part II
Coconut oil is considered a saturated fat because it is 92% saturated, 6% polyunsaturated, and 2% monosaturated.  But it is a Medium Chain Trigliceride (as opposed to Long Chain) fat and therein lies the story.  MCTs (they're called) are digested fully and burned as a carbohydrate.  This seems astounding when you look at a tub of the stuff and it stands as stiff as Crisco.  But it melts at 78 degrees (20 degrees below body temp) so it stays liquified in the body.
The big deal is that is not stored as fat.  It is burned as a carbohydrate and is primarily used as a fuel rather than shoved into fat cells for later use during a famine or a yearlong march through a desert.  That's when stored fat is helpful, but in our daily lives in this country, we're better off not storing too much fat.
Nutritional science know knows that trans fatty acids are a main culprit in the development of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and just about all degenerative diseases.  This is because they initiate so much free radical damage.  The refining and deodorizing process that vegetable oils are put through (soy, canola, safflower, corn, etc) bring the temperatures to 400 degrees for extended periods of time. This causes formation of trans fats.  The bad guys.  Some of these oils are then hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated, making them even less fit for consumption and increasing the trans fat content.  Making matters worse is the fact that rancid vegetable oils have no taste or smell to alert us to toss it into the trash can.  Shipping these oils in hot trucks, storing for months on warehouses and shelves, packaging in clear-see-through bottles, all lead to rancidity.  Only our cells know.  Our noses and tongues don't.
Coconut oil is very easy to extract.  You can wring oil out of coconuts without any heat.  But in any case it is just about impervious to heat.  It is the one oil that can handle quite high temperatures in cooking and baking without turning toxic or rancid.  It can be subjected to even higher heats than olive oil or butter in cooking with no loss of nutrient value.
Next in one of the books, come the 200 pages explaining the various studies done on coconut oil and it's effect on various diseases.  Two populations studied that explored the effects of coconut oil and coconut products are the Pakapuka and Tokelau peoples, who live on 2 atolls near the equator, under the jurisdiction of New Zealand.  The researchers studying these peoples reported that the overall health of these groups was extremely good.  They were lean and healthy had an absence of hypercholesterolemia (High Cholesterol); no hypothyroidism or kidney disease.  Atherosclerosis, heart disease, colitis, colon cancer, hemorrhoids, ulcers, diverticulosis and appendicitis were virtually unknown.  (also unknown to them was processed food) When these islanders migrated to New Zealand, their health issues, in one generation, came to match those in their newly adopted country. Even though their fat consumption went from about 60% on the islands to 43% in New Zealand.
Tomorrow, the LIST of disease prevention and treatment uses for coconut oil...
mary anne