Monday, 22 June 2015

The stigma surrounding coconut

There's a stigma going round.

No, it's not surrounding egg yolks and how they raise your cholesterol, or how full-fat dairy is the devil's creation.

Nope, they've sort of been dealt with.

It's the stigma surrounding coconut. And all it's unbelievably delicious offspring (coconut oil, coconut butter etc.)

I''m not really one to talk though, because as soon as I heard one of my Food teachers talking about how coconut is full of saturated fat making it extremely bad for you, I was fooled into thinking just that.

I wouldn't touch the divine white flesh of the natural fruit. I was convinced I would become super unhealthy if I did.

Then I noticed coconut oil, coconut milk, coconut butter, all things coconut steadily growing in popularity on numerous Healthy Living blogs. My first reaction was; 'This can't be right, coconut is the devil!' Then I thought to myself; 'Oh well, if they want to be unhealthy.' Then when I kept reading about how coconut is not unhealthy and it's fat works differently in the body, I still wouldn't touch it, claiming that, yes it is healthy, but I just won't eat it.

I don't know if it was the negative stigma surrounding the words 'UNSATURATED FAT' or the fact that I still wasn't 100% convinced of the research surrounding coconuts benefits, but I still couldn't bring myself to eat it.

If you've read my blog for quite a while, you would know that this was quite a while back (coconut lover convert!) and now I embrace coconut in all it's forms (when I was running ridiculous distances, coconut water was my saviour for re-hydrating super fast!) but it did take a while.

It took a lot of my own research and more blog reading and in the end, I just tried it.

Coconut butter was my first encounter.

It was love at first bite.

I knew regardless of any new research that came out labeling coconut as the villain or hero, I would continue to eat it, because I knew there was no turning back now. It's like tasting chocolate for the first time. You can never un-taste chocolate.

And now? I've pretty much tried it all. Give me coconut butter, coconut oil (for some reason coconut oil took me the longest to try?) coconut water... you name it, I'll probably love it!

It's got to be one of the hardest things about the health industry; the ever-changing research and findings that can change a population's viewpoint on a single food. It's kind of crazy really!

My advice? Listen to your body above all else. If it makes you feel great and makes your body work as best it can, then I'm gonna guess it's a pretty good food! (My body definitely reacted positively to an introduction of coconut to my diet. Hello healthy hair, skin, nails and energy!)

The majority of meals I make with coconut center around coconut butter in a baked sweet potato:

Or mixed into truffles to set in the freezer: (because coconut has this awesome hardening quality when slightly chilled!)

However I have been known to experiment with coconut butters slightly different properties... like melting then hardening atop an ice-cream:
And my newest revelation with coconut oil: Using it to fry up beans, lentils, peas and corn until crispy in a fry pan. So good!
Even bringing them to lunch atop some steamed broccoli and brussels sprouts (maybe a little bit to hide the smell of the steamed greens... but mostly because this lunch was uuh-mazing!

What about you?
Did you buy into the 'unhealthy-ness' that is coconut?
Are you a coconut fan?
Favourite use/ type of coconut product?

That's it from me today folks. I hope you all have a wonderful day and take out some time to do something you truly enjoy! Bye!! :D

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