Whether you cook with coconut oil yet or not, you’ve probably heard of it. This pure white oil has become a household name for the health-conscious, and it’s popping up in everything from stir-fry recipes to vegan fudge. Coconut oil is the “it” ingredient of the moment.
A lot of the buzz around coconut oil comes from its medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs). This type of fat is rapidly metabolized in the liver so it’s immediately available as an energy source; it’s also easier to burn off and harder to store as fat. Some MCTs, like lauric acid, work to keep you healthy by eliminating disease-causing microbes and lowering inflammation. Don’t listen to the conventional wisdom advocating a low fat diet—just opt for high quality, healthy fats, like MCTs.
Of course, not all coconut oil is created equal—you’ll want to shop for organic, fair trade, and virgin options. Why? First, virgin coconut oil is the most minimally processed product you can buy. While refined oil comes from dried coconut meat that is bleached and chemically processed, virgin oil is extracted from fresh coconuts. Going organic also ensures the finished product won’t be contaminated by any pesticides or harmful additives. Finally, choose fair trade to ensure all the local farm workers were fairly compensated and ethically treated.
An easy way to make sure you’re getting only the highest quality coconut oil on the market? Try Nutiva’s version! For a limited time, Thrive Market is giving all a FREE jar of Nutiva Organic Virgin Coconut Oil. Claim your FREE gift today before they’re gone!