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Since the past few days, the internet is flooded with the news and debate about the harmful effects of coconut oil. What caused this rage was the lecture of a Harvard University professor who reportedly termed it as the ‘worst thing’ or ‘the pure poison’ that one can consume. Her talks may have made her lecture video popular among millions but it has definitely come at loggerheads with consumer’s enlarge, especially with the people of South India. A fruit which is highly beneficial in all its form has become the center of controversy again because of the presence of saturated fat in the oil. Undoubtedly, the researchers from the West will oppose the use of coconut oil even though a majority of their population considered it to be healthy. However, the rest of the people should not doubt their reliability on coconut oil. It is still unclear about the fact that its high content of saturated fat like lauric acid (40%) and medium chain fatty acid, which is a rare combination, is a major factor for heart disease. In fact, the presence of such fatty acids is known to provide energy to the body and increase the good cholesterol level in our body. Yes, it may be advisable for people with heart problems to consume in moderation but who consumes cooking oil to an extreme level.
Isn’t their entire diet has to be well balanced rather than just controlling the level of coconut oil? Even if people from the south use it often in their cooking they haven’t suffered any major problem to date because they know how to use it. The famous celebrity nutritionist, Rujuta Diwekar, said in an interview, “The bad thing is to stay blind to the tons of scientific evidence that saturated fat is not linked to heart disease,” while answering a question about is saturated fat really bad. She is of the opinion that naturally rich fat food should be consumed freely instead of processing them to make into low-fat food should be avoided. Even other Indian Nutritionist are against such claims to put the reputation of coconut oil at stake. So, to answer the above question your coconut oil in the kitchen is not poison or unhealthy.
We need to understand that there is a difference in food pattern in every country and according to which the person adapts oneself. Even within India, every state has its own food habit which suits the local people. If that is the case how can we go by one single guideline by a foreign country? It is time we get over it and focus on our own research. Taking into consideration the total food is better than the individual parts. We often read about the percentage of calories that is good for the body but is it really easy to calculate the specific amount for every single item. It is essential to understand the fact that everything, when consumed in moderation, is beneficial for the body. But we often forget this fact whenever we hear the news that the intake of a particular food item can lead to a severe disease. In case of coconut oil, its multiple fat contents give rise to various benefits like for ailing our hair, skin, digestive system to quenching our thirst with tender coconut and satisfying our sweet cravings in the form of yummilicious ladoos. Instead of going rashly by the internet diet and adding everywhere, use it wisely and where it is best suited.
It is advisable not to go by the western fear and studies all the time but stick to our roots and granny’s wisdom in some aspect. Every now and then you will come across news telling you that what you thought was a healthy food is simply unfit for your health. But not all of it is backed by the research of Harvard professors. As a consumer let’s not get blinded and confused by the overload of information doing the rounds instead enjoy the maximum benefit of this ‘superfood’ by using it in a fair proportion.
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