Hydrogenated Coconut Oil: No Hydrogenation Please
Hydrogenated coconut oil is not the same as natural coconut oil. Hydrogenation is a process wherein “unsaturated” fatty acids are changed into more “saturated” fatty acids. Vegetable oils are heated to high temperatures and bombarded with hydrogen atoms to make them less prone to spoilage.
By hydrogenating coconut oil or any other vegetable oil, many of the fatty acids turn into trans fatty acids or trans fats.
Trans fats are artificial fat molecules alien to your body and create all kinds of health problems.
Several studies demonstrate that hydrogenated oils from any source increase the possibility of heart disease. In fact, hydrogenated oil consumption magnifies cardiovascular disease risk more than consumption of any other type of fat.
But why hydrogenate or saturate an already highly saturated fat? At already 92 percent saturated, coconut oil is the most saturated dietary fat known to man. So why saturate further?
Researchers can use hydrogenated corn oil or hydrogenated soybean oil instead and get the same effects for their purposes. But they prefer hydrogenated or “hydrogenized” coconut oil because of Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCT) or Medium Chain Fatty Acids (MCFA).
MCTs or MCFAs are the predominant fat molecules in coconut oil. Compared to Long Chain Triglycerides (LCT) or Long Chain Fatty Acids (LCFA) 100 percent found in almost all other vegetable oils, “smaller” MCTs tend to mix better with test diets. Simply put, coconut oil makes research job easier.
But that still doesn’t explain why hydrogenized coconut oil is extensively used in the food industry. Well, the simple answer to that is hydrogenated coconut oil is much cheaper than natural or Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO).
Below are some of the processed foods that usually contain man-made hydrogenated fats, and consequently, harmful trans fats:
- margarine and shortening
- fried foods like French fries
- processed foods like cereal
- salad dressings
Please do your best to stay away from hydrogenated oils of all types. Your body was not designed to handle toxic trans fats in a constructive fashion at all.