Hydrogenated Coconut Oil and Risks
Did you know that buying hydrogenated coconut oil will lower your risk of heart disease? I did not. But many people do know this and have started making the switch to it for their own consumption. This article looks at the health benefits of hydrogenated coconut oil.
Coconut oil is high in saturated fats, which raise bad cholesterol and contribute to heart disease. It is also very high in trans-fatty acids, which cause bad LDL cholesterol and plaque build up in artery walls. By substituting hydrogenated coconut oil with traditional vegetable oils you can reduce your intake of these harmful substances. The result is a lowered risk of heart disease and other health issues.
Blood Pressure Reducing Mechanism
A study published in the American Heart Association’s journal Archives of Internal Medicine shows that consuming coconut oil has a positive effect on reducing blood pressure and decreasing the likelihood of heart disease. Other research by the University of California shows a reduction in cholesterol levels and a lower risk of type 2 diabetes. One study suggests that it may help prevent colon cancer. In one study, women who consumed it decreased their risk of breast cancer by almost 50 percent. Replacing hydrogenated vegetable oil with normal vegetable oil reduces the amount of saturated fat and trans-fatty acids in your diet, which are both known risk factors for heart disease.
People use hydrogenated coconut oil in many forms. Most often it is found in a cream named Thera Virginia, which is used for skin care and massage. It can also be found in moisturizing lotions, soap, shampoos, conditioners and more. For most of us, hydrogenated coconut oil comes from a grocery or health food store.
Is it hydrotyped?
While it can be found in health food stores, it’s important to read the label of ingredients to make sure it is actually “hydrotyped” with coconut oil (which is what is listed on the back of the bottle). Just as you wouldn’t eat something that had been processed with something other than food, you should avoid products that have been “hydrotyped.” There are some exceptions, like when companies include it in their moisturizers, but that is a very rare occurrence. By using “all natural” moisturizing products, you can help ensure that it really is all-natural.
Another common reason people want to use hydrogenated coconut oil is as cooking oil. Some popular manufacturers include it in frying pans, sizzling pans and deep fryers. The problem with this is that the resulting product is not the same thing used in cooking. It is likely that the vegetable oil used to cook with may contain byproducts, such as partially hydrogenated vegetable oil (LAVOC), dioxane and other chemicals that are commonly listed as carcinogens on food labels. Although some of these chemicals are considered probable human carcinogens, there is no proof that they cause cancer in humans. Even if they do, exposure to even small amounts over a long period of time could be harmful.
About Skin Effects
Hydrogenated oil is a popular ingredient in products meant to hydrate dry skin. In this case, however, it has been shown to cause the development of fine lines and wrinkles. Although the cosmetic use of these products is debatable, it is unlikely that hydrogenated coconut oil will reduce lines or wrinkles. It is likely that the product will provide little benefit to those who are trying to reduce their body weight through diet and regular exercise.
Before you decide to make a purchase of hydrogenated coconut oil, make sure you understand how the process is done. Not all companies process the oil in the same way. You want to be sure that the product you choose is made with unprocessed organic coconut oil. Companies that advertise their product as “functional” may simply be selling hydrogenated coconut oil, which lacks the benefits of organic. To get the full benefits of this healthful oil, it is best to buy organic.