Aside from its delicious taste, coconut provides a vast array of health benefits. Since converting to a ketogenic diet, coconut, in various different forms, has become one of my staple foods.
This is fast becoming one of the most popular cooking oils. Thanks to its rich content of saturated fats, it has a high smoke point, meaning it can be used for cooking at high temperatures without the fats becoming damaged or oxidised. Oxidised fats lead to inflammation3 so I always cook with this rather than extra virgin olive oil, for example.
When eating vegetables, I always add a tablespoon of coconut oil (or homemade grass-fed ghee) on top. Not only does this add to the flavour, but many vitamins contained within vegetables are fat-soluble, meaning that fat must be eaten alongside them for optimal absorption.
Never heard of it? MCT oil is a concentration of medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) which are found in regular coconut oil, but only in small amounts. Have a quick read of this detailed article: What is MCT Oil Really? MCT Oils vs. Coconut Oil Explained.
As it would mean eating a lot of coconut oil to obtain a fair amount of MCTs, I choose to use MCT oil over coconut oil in some instances. MCT oil is quickly absorbed by the liver and provides fuel in the form of ketones for both brain and body4. For this reason, it always features in my breakfast. I either make a Bulletproof Coffee, using grass fed ghee and MCT oil, or I mix a tablespoon of MCT with a couple of teaspoons of maca. Both ways are a great kickstart to my mornings.
I also use MCT oil during a carb refeed. This enables me to obtain fuel from two sources: glucose and ketones. Not only do I feel great after these meals, I can rest assured that my body won’t store fat thanks to the MCT oil being quickly burned as energy5.
I can source whole coconuts in my local supermarkets for around 80p each, quite cheap considering the benefits obtained by eating them. The flesh provides healthy fats and fibre; a winning combination for reducing hunger.
I rarely drink coconut water due to its sugar content (6g per cup). However, if I do, it is always following an intense workout or as part of my carb refeed.
I prefer to eat fresh coconut as its flesh is encased by a hard shell, protecting it from contamination and mould. However, desiccated coconut is a great alternative to use when making sweet treats, such as my Coconut Energy Balls, or pure coconut milk without stabilisers which are generally stored in hormone-disrupting BPA cans6. G.
Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. All products mentioned are ones I genuinely use and recommend.