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Is coconut oil a healthier option?


Everyone’s going nuts for coco oil lately - but what’s the hype all about?

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Is coconut oil a healthier option?

If you’ve been paying attention to health gurus, Instagram influencers or your Facebook feed in the last 12 months, you’ve probably noticed the hype surrounding coconut oil. So, is it worth all the hype?

The science

In food, there are two main types of fat - saturated and unsaturated. Saturated fats are associated with increased blood cholesterol levels, whereas unsaturated fats are ‘healthy fats’ and support good heart health. Coconut oil is the only plant oil which belongs in the saturated fat family, and is around 90% saturated fat - higher than butter!

One argument in favour of coconut oil is that it is predominately made up of a particular type of saturated fatty acid - lauric acid - which acts like healthier, unsaturated fats in our body, and increase levels of HDL (good) cholesterol in our blood. However, coconut oil also acts to increase our levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol.

Should I include coconut oil in my diet?

Overall, there’s very little scientific evidence to suggest coconut oil has any noteworthy benefits on health and it can increase levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol. Until research is able to show us that coconut oil has health benefits that aren't outweighed by health risks it is best we continue to consume healthier oils that have been proven with years of research to have health benefits such as extra virgin olive oil.

Cooking Tips

  • Swap coconut oils for extra virgin olive, canola, or avocado oils.
  • When using coconut milk or cream, opt for ‘reduced fat’ and ‘light’ options
Your Personal Healthy Eating Quiz

What you eat or don’t eat affects how you look, feel and perform. Take our short quiz to find out what foods you could introduce to help you be your best.

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What is healthy eating?

Eating healthy is making sure you enjoy a wide variety of foods from each of the five major food groups daily, in the amounts recommended. The five major food groups as recommended by the Australian Guide to Healthy Eating are:

  1. vegetables and legumes/bean
  2. fruit
  3. lean meats and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds, legumes/beans
  4. grain (cereal) foods, mostly wholegrain and/or high cereal fibre varieties
  5. milk, yoghurt, cheese and/or alternatives, mostly reduced fat.

Foods are grouped together because they provide similar amounts of key nutrients and eating a variety of foods from the list above helps to promote good health and reduce the risk of disease.

How do I improve my diet?

If you want to improve your diet you have come to the right place. By completing the Healthy Eating Quiz you’ll receive instant personalised feedback and a report on your diet quality to highlight any areas where you can improve your overall eating habits. Your score is based on the frequency and variety of the foods consumed from the five major food groups mentioned above. No Money No Time can help you improve your score by providing tips, goals and suggestions. On top of this we will provide quick, cheap and healthy recipes as well as credible answers to diet hacks, myths and FAQ’s.

Is my diet healthy?

Dietary habits are different between people. Some people choose to follow a particular diet (i.e., Keto diet or vegan diet) while some have to make changes due to certain food restrictions or health conditions. If you want to know if what you usually eat is healthy, then do the Healthy Eating Quiz today to give you the answers in less than 10 minutes.

Why is healthy eating important?

Your HEQ score and personalised feedback report is based on the frequency and variety of healthy core foods you usually eat. This is important because no single food contains all the nutrients we need to stay healthy. Some foods are higher in nutrients than others and people who have a lot of variety in the foods they eat are more likely to be healthy and to stay healthy. In other words, if you can eat a large variety of vegetables as opposed to only 2-3 types of vegetables, the benefits are much greater. This type of diet also helps you to feel better, think better and perform better during your usual daily activities.

Take the Healthy Eating Quiz