Coconut is either loved or hated, and millions of Americans are excited to see coconut as a seemingly new big trend in nutrition. With the celebration of National Nutrition Month, it is worth taking a look at a few of the major trends happening in the health industry to see if they are all fluff and little substance.
Coconut is relatively healthy on its own merit. The problem is not so much the coconut itself but the use of it. Patients may find coconut to be a healthy option, but it is not necessarily healthy when combined with yogurt, milk, ice cream, and many other food combinations. The result is little more than a flavoring- healthy initially, but made unhealthy by what is also added in it (notably sugars, fat, etc).
What are the claims?
The arguments circle around a few major claims. For one, coconut hastens weight loss, especially with milk. Coconut milk is less fat than other milk types, particularly whole milk and dairy milk. Many individuals claim that it improves heart health and is a major deterrent to Alzheimer’s Disease. These claims are boastful but hardly empirically true. The fact is that there are very few substantial studies that cement the health benefits of coconut milk. It is lower in fat, but that is not necessarily enough to warrant coconut milk is a serious new nutritional trend. Interestingly, it may still be the healthiest of all coconut-related derivatives.
What about coconut oil?
Coconut oil is being specifically isolated as a major health addition, but is it really? Coconut oil is also made up 90% of saturated fat, so any health benefits applied with the 10% (or less) of coconut are factored into the large quantities of saturated fats. Coconut oil may be the least healthy variation of coconut one could find, as it is almost pure fat with a coconut flavor.
Like many things, coconut can be enjoyed in moderation. The staff at Lahey Hospital is proud to deliver nutritional facts with no ulterior motives and no catch. Patients can reach out to the hospital at www.linkedin.com/company/lahey-hospital-&-medical-center. The team wants all patients to be exceptionally healthy and to tackle their health challenges with realistic and fact-based goals.