Whether you’re on the keto diet and aiming to eat more clean, plant-based foods, or you just want to eat more healthy fats, coconut is one of nature’s perfect foods to deliver healing, nourishing, delicious fat.
I’m a big fan of the keto diet because it replaces sugar – the culprit that’s making Americans sicker and fatter – with fats, which the body needs for optimal health in so many ways.
Fat is essential for good health, and we need to incorporate more of it into our daily diets for ache-free joints, disease-free hearts, and inflammation-free brains.
For a couple of decades in America, saturated fat was the enemy, and blamed for increasing rates of heart disease, obesity, and stroke. As people shifted to eating fewer saturated fats and more sugar in “fat free” processed foods, rates of heart disease, obesity, elevated cholesterol, and Alzheimer’s skyrocketed. And to this day, I STILL have patients coming into my wellness center, who have been told by their ‘doctor’ not to eat these types of healthy saturated fat that will drastically IMPROVE your health.
Now we know, after a decade of research studies on thousands of patients, that people who consumed more saturated fats actually had a lower incidence of heart disease than people who ate diets with less fat and more sugar.
It’s no question why. Sugar creates massive amounts of inflammation in your body, your digestive system, your joints, and your cardiovascular system. Heart disease is the #1 killer in America, and there is no doubt sugar is the major contributing factor to this devastating statistic.
So the shift back in recent years to sugar being the food to avoid is a welcome development, and the keto diet is a big part of that push.
But that said, there is a RIGHT way to do keto, and a WRONG way to do keto.
You see, it’s more complicated than what I call the caveman diet plan: “Fat good. Sugar bad.” Or as I’ve said before in another way, there are fats that HEAL, and fats that KILL.
There are a variety of saturated fats, and not all types of saturated fats are healthy, just as not all saturated fats lead to health problems. It’s even more complex than that though because we actually need a certain amount of the so-called “bad saturated fats” to function properly both physically and mentally.
Is your head spinning yet? The human body is complex. But here’s why this matters…
Perhaps you’ve heard coconut oil getting a bad rap from media (and a certain Harvard professor over a year ago) and health care officials due to the large amounts of saturated fat it contains.
But now you know that not all saturated fat is bad. And here’s why we need the fat in coconut oil in particular…
Coconut oil contains Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs), which is the “good for you” kind of saturated fat vs. the “artery-clogging” fats you’ll find in cheese, steak, and other foods popular on the keto diet.
MCTs are good for us due to the fact that they are easily digestible. Our body sends these types of fats straight to the liver where they can be easily converted into energy or something called ketone bodies. The ketone bodies are actually great for the brain, and they’ve been proven to even have therapeutic impact on brain disorders like Alzheimer’s.
What is great about coconut oil and sets it apart from other saturated fats is that it contains 90% of these fatty acids that are great for the brain and body.
Not only that, but coconut oil contains 3 types of fatty acids: capric, caprylic, and lauric acids. These are actually an important part of MCTs that make them unique. They’re antimicrobial and disinfectants. In other words, they help create a strong, healthy immune system.
As a result, coconut oil staves off infections both externally and internally. Externally, it protects the skin from absorbing microbes that cause infections. Internally, the fatty acids are converted to monocaprins and monolaurins, which boost the immune system.
Truly, coconut oil can heal the body from the inside out.
Health benefits of coconut oil include:
- It increases your energy – Certain foods are easier for the body to convert into energy, and MCT’s are very easily converted into energy, so it leaves you feeling invigorated and ready to take on the world.
- It prevents infections caused by bacteria, viruses, and fungi – Coconut oil contains unique fatty acid that can kill harmful pathogens. In addition, coconut oil forms monoglyceride when digested, which also has powerful properties to kill off the causes of infections, staphylococcus aureus, and candida albicans (STAPH AND YEAST)! These properties also help with resistance to UTI’s, kidney infections, and liver damage.
- It improves skin and hair health – Coconut oil helps not only our health, but it also can improve our external beauty by protecting and conditioning it.
- Coconut oil slows the aging process – It contains antioxidants that help keep the body young from the inside, out. So when you take coconut oil in any form, it gives the body some of the nutrition it needs to prevent damage from being done to healthy tissues in the body by invading pollutants and toxins. This means that not only does coconut oil help you look younger, but it helps the body to fight off the damage that comes with age.
- It helps prevent heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and Alzheimer’s – Because of the roles that coconut oil’s ketone bodies and HDL cholesterol (the “good kind”) play, consumption of coconut oil is associated with decreased risk of serious diseases, as well as improving brain and cardiovascular function. It also raises your BENIGN large, fluffy LDL particles, which are GOOD!
So while you may see a raise in your total cholesterol when you are consuming coconut oil on a regular basis, don’t be worried. Total cholesterol went up because you improved the function of both the HDL, and the large, fluffy LDL, which overall, is hyper-protective of your body, your blood, your brain, and your cells. In fact, higher cholesterol levels have been associated with living longer, and lower cancer rates!
So now that you know how awesome coconut oil is, are you wondering how to eat more of it? (Other than by the spoonful, which I give you full permission to do. My kids fight over who gets to lick the coconut oil off the spoon!)
Give your smoothies a boost.
If you’ve ever tried any of my alkaline smoothie recipes, you know how big of a fan I am of adding coconut oil to just about every smoothie. Aside from the benefits I’ve already listed, its healthy fat keeps you fuller longer. Plus, it’s alkalizing, so it neutralizes the more sugar-filled fruits you add to your smoothie. And its antimicrobial, antifungal properties keep that sugar from turning into yeast in your digestive track.
Here are a few of my favorite smoothie recipes with coconut oil:
Replace butter when baking.
Grass-fed, organic butter is okay as a transitional food, but whenever possible, I swap it with coconut oil. Whether you’re making grain-free granola, your own Ezekiel bread, or just about any other baked good at home, coconut oil can be a substitute for butter in and on the baked good. Not only does it have similar melting properties, it also adds a subtle sweetness that allows you to use less sugar in your recipes. Give this a try even if you aren’t a fan of the taste of coconut – I promise you won’t miss the butter in your favorite recipes.
Create anti-inflammatory desserts.
As you know, I used to have a serious sweet tooth. These days, I’ve curbed my cravings for sugar, but I often still like to treat myself with a little bit of alkaline, anti-inflammatory sweetness at the end of a long day. My mouth is watering just thinking about this list!
- My favorite Vanilla Coconut Chia Pudding
- Lemon Coco Bombs
- Chopped Berries with Mint and Coconut Butter
- Coconut Cream Dessert Topper – Chocolate or Vanilla!
- Clean Keto Coconut Fat Bombs
Use it for savory cooking on the stovetop.
Coconut oil has a higher smoke point than extra virgin olive or other oils, making it ideal for sautéing, pan-frying, or any cooking at high heat. It really should be the ONLY oil you use when cooking. Did you know that olive oil turns rancid at high heats? If you’ve never tried substituting coconut oil for olive oil, grapeseed oil, or those nasty vegetable and canola oils that are partially hydrogenated, I urge you to give it a try when you’re cooking dinner tonight. Lots of savory recipes benefit from the subtle sweetness of coconut oil. It adds a depth of flavor that I think you’re really going to love. Here are a few recipes to try:
- Easy Weeknight Coconut Curry
- Stir-Fry with Coconut Lime Quinoa
- Wild Salmon and Veggie Curry
- Farm Fresh Fall “Pasta” Salad
Add it to your coffee or tea.
Did you know that coffee actually depletes your energy? It’s true. So by adding coconut oil, you’ll even out the energy spike and crash, giving you more lasting energy throughout your day. That’s why we created Acid-Kicking Coffee Creamer, an alkaline mineral supplement that includes coconut oil. You can add coconut oil and Acid-Kicking Coffee Creamer to any hot beverage to make it more alkaline, less inflammatory, and more creamy and delicious. Here are 2 recipes to try:
Did you know that both flavors of our Alkamind Organic Daily Protein contain coconut oil for lasting, alkaline energy before, during, and after your workout?
You can add a scoopful of clean keto fats and proteins to any smoothie with our Alkamind Organic Daily Protein, which features:
- ZERO grams of sugar
- NO artificial anything!
- Only 110 calories per serving
- 20 grams of protein
- 3 healthy fats
Fitness Magazine called it “a superfood lover’s dream.” And Shape Magazine listed it in their “Top 10 Plant-Based Protein Powders That Don’t Taste Like Dirt.”
So try it today! You can buy one jar or Subscribe & Save 15%.
LOVE the PROTEIN!
“I've looked for a long time for a great organic plant based protein and I've finally found it! I love both of the flavors and how it dissolves so easily in water or coconut milk. You don't even need a blender or shaker cup. Best of all....It's so gentle on my stomach (which I have found other proteins really start to affect me after a while and I get stomach aches). I never feel sick when I take it and I can use it everyday! Thanks so much. I LOVE IT!!” –Julie C. Verified Buyer
GET OFF YOUR ACID!