So, is or is not coconut oil legitimately as good as people are telling me it is?
From cooking to mouth sloshing to lathering it into your locks, I feel like this stuff’s usefulness ubiquity has become the vegan’s version of the Windex wielding dad gag in “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”. Sure, it tastes great on toast, but if I was asked to compare it to any other similar sub (or butter for that matter), is it really that much more awesome? It’s been a while since I’ve bought the stuff (too expensive on an already expensive diet), so let’s look at what it purports to do and go from there. Three of the biggies are that it can cure arthritis and degenerative disc disease, give you a healthier BMI, and is even rumored to help cure Alzheimer’s. (I’d add in the bit where it states it can make you “live longer”, but I always hate that vague claim – longer than what? Than if I’d jaywalked in front of a speeding semi? Longer than my grandmother who died of cancer in her 20’s? Sorry to say, but I’ve already beat that odd. Even if I die in two seconds.) So, that leaves us with BMI’s, backbones, and brain aging.
And the verdict? As multi-tiered as the claims.
Not much in the way of concrete scientific proof going on for weight loss. Not that the stuff’s inimical, but with its super high sat fat level (even when compared to butter), it’s not “proven” to reduce your body mass index. Maybe that’s just because it’s not yet been studied as much as olive oil or soybean oil. Yet, the low BMI does seem to correlate. So maybe that’s less “causative” and more just because the people who use it are – for the most part – on an otherwise superhealthy diet of natch noms. Before I went vegan, literally the only people shoving coco-oil in my face were the ones who nixed creature products from their diet – which makes sense; because if you’re not part of a group who’s avoiding animal products, you’d just use butter and regular oil to twice fry your heart attack wings and bacon pancakes, right?
So, I can’t help but think that’s a variable. The lower BMI’s ‘cause the group of folk using it are otherwise health concerned enough to deliberately avoid delicious things (or if it’s morally based – to avoid consuming stuff that came from stuff that used to blink with eyes and have a mother or whatevz.) So, what about that second thing – the aches and pains?
Well, there may be some legs to this backbone thing – and body inflammation in general. But it’s not directly, according to one medical site I read. What’s suggested is that higher Omega-3 intake reduces inflammation – but that Omega-6 intake has to go down in order for O3 to wave its magic wand over your body. (Otherwise, it apparently is counterproductive.) Where the coco grease comes in, is as a sub for all the shiz you’d usually cook with because most of ‘em have that Omega-6 in ‘em – and thus must be kicked outta the kitchen. So, yeah, in a way coconut oil can help with your miscellaneous aches, but only the way taking the pus out of a MRSA infection and replacing it with medication and gauze does. According to what I’m seeing, you could just nix the Omega-6 oils and forget the coconut oil too. And then the Omega-3 (which you can get from flax or chia seeds) would be able to do its job.
But that’s just according to one article with one writer.
On this next site –covering the third point of old age forget-itis – I saw something interesting.
Alzheimer’s.net did an article on coconut oil, linking to a study done at the University of Oxford. In that study, at the very least there were temporarily reduced symptoms in patients with dementia. The idea is that the stuff boosts ketone production in the body. And the support for this on the main Alzheimer’s site itself seemed reason enough to keep looking at more evidence. Didn’t take me long, either. In the comments at the bottom, I saw more than a few testimonials about dudes whose wives suddenly became less incontinent. Then there were the middle aged who aren’t yet afflicted, but note that since trying it out, they’ve become a bit “sharper”. And, finally, there were also a handful who said – yeah, there’s even less back and arthritic pain after taking it. So, at the end of the dietary day, it makes sense why BMI isn’t a cause and effect thing. But why such a big disagreement between the medical journals and the actual applications for pain and brain maladies?
Are these old ladies only not peeing themselves out of some placebo effect?
There’s gotta be a better reason, right?
Maybe this one which a commenter aptly pointed out: big pharma loses any time we find a fix that they can’t price tag.
And guess who funds the “research” on appropriate “fixes”?
I’mma just leave this here… (and probably forget it later):
“…doctors complete some of their expert research with funds from Big Pharma. Private charities and foundations account for a mere 5 percent of the estimated $100 billion spent on biomedical research in the United States each year; pharmaceutical and medical device companies contribute approximately 67 percent.” – Drugwatch.com