Coconut, It's so Good for You

Gabby
By GabbyPA Latest Reply 2013-04-17 09:56:43 -0500
Started 2012-02-04 18:31:04 -0600

A friend sent me some information on coconut oil and I was astonished at all the great things it can do.

It is antibacterial, so combined with some baking soda it makes a great tooth paste

It is an oil that penetrates the shafts of your hair, eliminating the need for conditioners and works great on cracked heels.

It raises your good cholesterol (the HDL)

You can use it in place of butter for a non-trans fat oil in your baking.

You can store it opened without refrigeration for up to two years.

Consuming it straight from the jar helps with digestion

There is just so much it does. I made some oatmeal cookies with it today. I used almond flour, stevia and coconut oil instead of butter. The cookies crumble a little more, but the taste is great. They were light and almost fluffy.

How about coconut flour, a lot less carbs in there. That is what I am searching for to eliminate the flour and sugar…there go most of the carbs.

I also use coconut water (unsweetened) in smoothies or just drink it straight because it has natural electrolytes to keep you hydrated.

Do any of you use coconut in your cooking on a regular basis? How has it helped you?


44 replies

Nuffery
Nuffery 2013-04-17 09:56:43 -0500 Report

I've been also surfing the internet for the information about the effect of coconut oil for T2 diabetes, as I'm interested in the mechanism why it helps. http://coconutjuice.co/coconut-oil-diabetes-p... here for example it is said that coconut oil enhances metabolism and in that way lose weight, but I don't don't think that its possible to lose enough weight to lower blood sugar, probably it just increases insulin sensitivity.

digitaldoorbell
digitaldoorbell 2012-02-11 19:29:09 -0600 Report

I just started using this today. I have read countless articles on it before I started using it. I am very interested in seeing the results from it. It's funny, sometimes you read things here and then forget about them for a while. Now I recall why I wanted to try it.

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-12 09:44:22 -0600 Report

Please share how it works for you. I am very curious in all areas. I just made some coconut balls that are yummy and so low carb. Unsweet coconut, coconut oil, almond flour, stevia and a bit of vanilla. That is so much better than a macaroon loaded with sugar. I am really excited about using this product. I want to make some coconut milk soon too. YUM.

Karenformydiabetes
Karenformydiabetes 2012-02-06 19:31:56 -0600 Report

Coconut sugar has a lot of health benefits as well. It has a low GI which means no sugar spikes and it has lots of vitamins, minerals, and even amino acids. You have to make sure you're getting a good quality coconut sugar - make sure the ingredient list says "100% Coconut sap sugar" (Philippines requires this to export I discovered) or "pure coconut sugar". Some brands say they are only coconut sugar but they add other palm sugars or even cane sugar as fillers, which don't have the same nutrient value or low GI level as coconut sugar. I've done quite a bit of research about coconuts and coconut products, and one thing I've discovered is you have to be savvy when your searching - there's a lot of misinformation out there. One reliable website I found was http://www.sugarcoconut.com/
I really like baking with it. It can be replaced in recipes cup for cup. I've had my mother-in-laws chocolate cookies (plus a few other treats) and the coconut sugar makes them taste even yummier.
I also like to make those iced coffee's(like McD's has). Just take cold coffee poured over ice, and just add your preferred amount of cream and sugar (I actually don't drink hot coffee with sugar, but I really like the iced coffee's with it). My sugar levels rise just a little and they stay there for awhile (I have an insulin pump that I can match my insulin delivery to the low, slow rise of my blood sugar levels).
I'm really interested in the coconut flour as well. I love the high protein and fibre content. Anyone have a good recipe? Also which brand is the best to buy? I've read about some people having mould develop quite quickly with some brands…

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-07 09:00:51 -0600 Report

This is some great info. I know we had a discussion on palm sugars http://www.diabeticconnect.com/discussions/5971-coconut-palm-sugar
there was another one, but I cannot find it.

I was considering purchasing some. I usually use raw sugar or stevia, but this might be an interesting alternative. I use dark brown sugars as well in baking. A little can go a long way.

chayogarza
chayogarza 2012-02-08 14:34:46 -0600 Report

I have changed to stevia sugar.i read it's better.what is the difference in regular flour and coconut flour?

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-09 09:54:32 -0600 Report

I have not found all the info on that yet. I am looking for some comparisons. I did find some for almond flour here: http://www.diabeticconnect.com/discussions/14532-go-low-carb-with-almond-flour

Basically, coconut flour is going to be similar to almond flour in that it is gluten-free. I am not sure about it's carb content, but there are so many other good things in it, that it might outweigh the bad. But I have not found those yet.

Karenformydiabetes
Karenformydiabetes 2012-02-07 14:46:51 -0600 Report

I don't use sugar much, so mostly I used to use brown sugar (until I discovered coconut sugar 2 years ago). But I learned from one of those Marketplace episodes (that might be a Canadian show) that all brown sugars are white sugar with molasses added back in - so it goes through the same 4 chemical "baths" that white sugar does, and at the end they add molasses back in. I wasn't very impressed because I was always under the assumption that brown sugars were less processed and healthier for us. Always something new to learn. So now that I know how coconut sugar is made (they only heat it - should only be to 115c - to evaporate the water content) I feel better about using that - whenever I need sugar for something.

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-08 09:53:41 -0600 Report

Dang! I didn't know that. I suppose there is no way to figure that out. I think I will just go to the raw sugars and coconut sugars. They seem to have more good things in them like minerals and stuff. Man, people should be honest. I have to go check my brown sugar packages now.

jayabee52
jayabee52 2012-02-08 09:57:15 -0600 Report

I have known that about brown sugar for years! If my ex ran out of brown sugar when baking something she'd just add some white sugar and added the molasses to it. Worked fine!

jayabee52
jayabee52 2012-02-06 20:19:03 -0600 Report

I would expect that putting the coconut flour in the freezer might stop that mould from happening.

Karenformydiabetes
Karenformydiabetes 2012-02-07 14:39:42 -0600 Report

Yes that might be the solution. Anyone recommend any brands, or are they all pretty much the same quality?

jayabee52
jayabee52 2012-02-09 21:32:24 -0600 Report

heck I haven't even SEEN coconut flour in the store. Wouldn't even know where to look. Perhaps in a health food store or a Whole Foods store? So I would not have suggestions as to brands.

Graylin Bee
Graylin Bee 2012-02-09 21:47:29 -0600 Report

Sprouts hasboth the flour and sugar in their bulk food aisle. I think the carb count was around the same as for flour, but don't remember. I am allergic to coconut (at least the flakes and oil) so haven't tried the flour. I don't know if I am allergic to the whole plant or just portions.

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-10 10:41:14 -0600 Report

Coconut flour is made from the meat of a mature coconut, so it might not be so good for you to try it out.

I have seen it for sale in bulk at several online places. I find www.nuts.com and www.amazon.com have the best prices for it.

Caroltoo
Caroltoo 2012-02-06 17:39:45 -0600 Report

Just used coconut oil, milk, and flakes in a cassarole. It's still in the crockpot, but it's tasting pretty good. It's kind of a pacific islands meets India recipe. I'll write it up later, if it works as well as it seems to be.

jayabee52
jayabee52 2012-02-11 11:28:28 -0600 Report

How'd that new recipe turn out?

Caroltoo
Caroltoo 2012-02-11 18:30:28 -0600 Report

Spiked my BG more than I wanted, so added chicken to the leftovers and more spices. Second time around was good. Then I got sick and haven't been online for a couple days. I think it is/was a sinus congestion on the left side of my head only, but it is icky and moved into my lungs. Just taking care of my right now. Discovered W's craziness was due to acetominiphin and now he is in less pain and lucid again. It has been a horrible 10 days.

MrsCDogg
MrsCDogg 2012-02-06 08:06:33 -0600 Report

I have used coconut oil off and on for several years. Being from the south I occasionally love biscuits and gravy. So, one weekend morning I made biscuits with coconut flour, coconut oil and heavy cream. Then I took some sausage and cooked it, then used the fat from that along with some coconut oil and used some xanthan gum, heavy cream and salt and pepper. Like magic I had some very yummy biscuits and gravy. The biscuits were a bit heavier than ones made with white flour but the taste was so good and the gravy was rich and very satisfying!

kdroberts
kdroberts 2012-02-05 17:02:20 -0600 Report

I don't know about the hair, digestion and other stuff but the average of the studies over the last 25 years suggest it raises your risk of heart disease. This is a pretty good paper about it, but like everything, what happens for one person is not always going to happen to the next. http://www.hawaii.edu/hivandaids/Coconut%20%2...

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-05 20:28:17 -0600 Report

The article, while about coconut when talking about heat disease lumps it with all fats and the fact that too much, even of a good thing, is not so good. The main problem is that it does increase your overall cholesterol, but it does it through increasing your HDL (the good one). So it does get a bad rap in that way.

I am not advocating eating a bunch of it. Just substituting it for some of the oils we already use. I use olive oil and peanut oil. This was a nice way to try something new that offers more health benefits than some of the other oils I currently use. I don't fry foods, but I do use it to saute veggies or a bit to give my protein a nice browning.

I might try it in more baking as well. We will see. I have not used it in my hair...that would be a disaster. LOL

Nick1962
Nick1962 2012-02-05 15:54:57 -0600 Report

I don't cook with oil a lot, but I do use coconut oil to finish the cutting boards I make. Absorbs better than mineral oil and doesn't leave them feeling greasy. Also good for seasoning cast iron stuff.

Caroltoo
Caroltoo 2012-02-05 16:21:29 -0600 Report

Nick, that is good to know. I will start using it to season my cast iron skillets.

Caroltoo
Caroltoo 2012-02-06 15:15:08 -0600 Report

Seasoned with coconut oil this a.m. Worked well. Loved the flavor it left in the chop suey mix I used to create an egg foo yong for breakfast.

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-06 15:19:45 -0600 Report

Well gee, now I feel a need to wash all my cast iron pots so I can re-season them in coconut. I did just pick up a cool cast iron tea pot. But I don't think I will season that one. At least not on the inside.

locarbarbie
locarbarbie 2012-02-05 13:58:45 -0600 Report

I use mainly virgin coconut oil for most of my cooking now. I understand that it is very healthy (and nonGMO!) because of it's medium chain acids. I love the way it tastes and smells! I also sometimes smear a bit on my feet, lips and elbows for a natural moisturizer and softener!

Your cookies sound amazing! I too have been substituting almond (and coconut flour) flour in a lot of my recipes, although I find the texture somewhat weird depending on the recipe. Have you posted the cookie recipe on DC yet? I would love to try it.

I have also been using coconut milk (found in the asian section) for making curries and soups etc. It is also pretty low in carbs and just delicious.

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-05 20:18:19 -0600 Report

I have not because I don't know the carb counts on it. I will have to see if I can find that stuff and get that information. I know it is better than the flour and oats and sugar, and tonight I had some at a meeting and everyone really liked them.

The thing I am adding is Guar Gum. It is less expensive than Xanthan Gum and I believe it does the same thing. When I try it in a cake, I will know for sure. LOL

jayabee52
jayabee52 2012-02-04 20:26:08 -0600 Report

I usually make a 2 egg scrambled egg dish for breakfast using coconut oil with diced mushrooms, diced garlic and diced onion. I scramble the eggs and mix in the other ingredients and then turn on the heat and let it cook without further mixing. In the pan I use (kind of a flat bottomed wok) it comes out looking like a little like a pancake. I carefully turn the mixture over without further stirring and it cooks on the other side. I have always used the coconut oil for that.

Caroltoo
Caroltoo 2012-02-04 19:01:23 -0600 Report

I use it in some of my stir fry vegetable dishes and in a smoothie for Wayne. Coconut oil is also a treatment for Alzheimer's.

My smoothie that he likes best (he is not diabetic and is losing weight) is: a scoop of vanilla or coconut ice cream, milk for consistency, frozen blackberries, 1/2-1 banana, shredded coconut, and AFTER it is all blended, blend in 1T coconut oil. if you add the oil earlier, it will go to the bottom and coagulate rather than mix into the smoothie.

Coconut oil can cause diarrhea, so I started with 1 teaspoon for him and increased it gradually.

MrsCDogg
MrsCDogg 2012-02-06 08:09:11 -0600 Report

Coconut is also an outstanding remedy for diahrrea. Works like a charm!

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-06 14:58:33 -0600 Report

How can it be a cause and a remedy at the same time?

MrsCDogg
MrsCDogg 2012-02-07 05:10:52 -0600 Report

Coconut itself is the remedy. Not the oil. I've heard other folks say that the oil could be the cause too. I got my husband a big tray of coconut macaroons one year at Christmas. I had totally forgotten that they were "clogging" in nature. He ate a bunch of them over a few days. To make a long story short he ended up in the doctors office. Then after he returned home from his doctors visit it hit me. Duh! It's the coconut that caused him to be so constipated!!

Caroltoo
Caroltoo 2012-02-06 15:20:51 -0600 Report

Well, publications I've read, TaraHealth'a comments, and my husband's experience speak strongly to contradict this as a general solution for diahrrea. As we always say, we are all different, but the preponderance of evidence comes down on the side of it being a cause not a cure for diahrrea.

However, the literature and Wayne's experience both show that as the body adapts to the increased oil, it no longer causes diahrrea for most people. That's why the recommendation to start slow, increase gradually until you find the point of tolerance.

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-06 15:23:15 -0600 Report

Yes, I agree with that. I had to do that with Chia seeds as well. I kind of learned that the hard way. Too much fiber all at once makes you run to the potty a lot.

Caroltoo
Caroltoo 2012-02-09 17:06:11 -0600 Report

Which is exactly what you don't want when dealing with a 220 lb wheelchair bound individual who needs help getting there! Easy does it.

Gabby
GabbyPA 2012-02-05 13:48:59 -0600 Report

Yes, actually it was a video I saw on the improvement of an Alzheimer patient. He was moving from moderate to severe and his wife did a lot of research. She started him on 3T of it a day. He had taken a test where he was asked to draw a clock. He could only get a couple of numbers and drew circles all over the page. In a week, he was giving the test again, and he drew a recognizable clock. Still kind of messy, but you could see it. Then in week 2 he did another one and it had all the numbers in the right space inside the circle. Incredible.

They say it is because it feeds the brain without the use of glucose or insulin.

Caroltoo
Caroltoo 2012-02-05 14:28:43 -0600 Report

Same case, but I read it in a health magazine and tried it with Wayne. He is having a down time right now because of pain—broken tail bone at end of November and cracked or bruised rib two weeks ago—but is off his A's meds and doesn't seem to be any worse than I would expect him to be with a load of codone in his system. Strange. I shall keep on giving him coconut oil and see.