American Heart Association Strongly Advise Against the Use of Coconut Oils, Here's Why
The American Heart Association has released a new advisory that recommends consumers to avoid the use of coconut oils.
The new advisory was made after a review conducted by the association revealed that coconut oils contain significantly higher amounts of saturated fats than butter, beef fat and pork lard. Saturated fats has been known to increase the levels of LDL cholesterol, or also known as the "bad" cholesterol, in the blood. High levels of LDL cholesterol in the blood could clog the arteries, increasing the risk of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.
"We want to set the record straight on why well-conducted scientific research overwhelmingly supports limiting saturated fat in the diet to prevent diseases of the heart and blood vessels," said Dr Frank Sacks, lead author of the new advisory, in a report from BBC News.
For the new advisory, the researchers conducted a review of the most recent studies regarding the effects of dietary saturated fat intake. They found out that 82 percent of fat in coconut oil is actually saturated. This is significantly higher than butter, beef fat and pork lard, which consist of 63 percent, 50 percent and 39 percent of saturated fat, respectively.
The researchers did not found any favorable effects of coconut oil that could potentially offset its high saturated fat content. Due to this, the AHA strongly advise against the use of coconut oil.
A survey conducted by the association revealed that 72 percent of Americans believe that coconut oil is a healthy choice, while only 37 percent of nutritionists consider coconut oil as such. The belief that coconut oil is healthy was likely due to the mixture of fats found in this kind of oil. However, researchers noted that there other vegetable oils that were proven to be healthy, including olive and sunflower oils.
Experts claim that it is better for consumers to grill, bake, poach or steam their foods rather cooking it in oils, in order to reduce the consumption of saturated fats.