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Coconut Oil: Healthy Or Not, Researchers Finally Answer

Update Date: Jul 03, 2017 07:11 AM EDT
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Coconut oil
Learn more about coconut oil and if it's really the best option to use if you want to live healthier. (Photo : Getty Images / Linh Pham)

It has been a topic of debate if coconut oil is more beneficial for humans, compared to its other counterparts. Is it really a healthier alternative? Now, a research will provide us with some answers.

The Mystery Behind Coconut Oil

According to Alternet, the subject of this query is the source of a dispute. Primarily, the concern was considered to be settled years ago. This was back when scientist Ancel Keys said that all saturated fats are unhealthy.

Coconut oil, which is solid at room temperature, is a saturated fat. Keys carried out a "Seven Countries Study," looking into the diets and health outcomes of the populations of seven different countries. Decades later, Artemis Simopoulos, the author of The Omega Diet, re-opened the data.

It seems that Keys misinterpreted his data by not being able to recognize between omega-3 and omega-6 polyunsaturated fats. Could it be possible that he was wrong about saturated fats as well?

Now, advocates like Dr. Mercola and the Weston A. Price Foundation are convinced that saturated fats should be entirely exonerated. Coconut oil is being marketed as a health food, and some deem it as a nutritional supplement.

So Is Coconut Oil Healthy Or Not?

Per Health, the American Heart Association is set to lay all the facts down. Coconut oil is not a health food. According to a panel of experts published in an AHA advisory statement, it is also not a type of saturated fat.

In the journal, "Circulation," the authors admitted that recent studies have caused "confusion" about the possible health risks of saturated fat. Although, after re-evaluating the facts, they said that the Association's long-established advice, which is to eat fewer saturated fats and more unsaturated fats - remains one of the best ways to reduce the risk of heart disease.

In fact, they added that studies show that exchanging saturated fat with polyunsaturated vegetable oil can lower the risk cardiovascular disease by about 30%. That's comparable to reductions usually seen with the use of statin drugs.

Saturated fats can be found in meat, full-fat milk, and butter, as well as some tropical oils like palm and coconut oil. Other types of fat include poly-unsaturated fats  nuts, seeds, fatty fish, corn and soybean oils) and mono-unsaturated fats (nuts and seeds, avocado, and olive and canola oils). 

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