Dirty harry 2009-04-01 13:37:07
Shy away from coconut diet
It s more important to balance your food intake than to eat
Would you recommend The Coconut Diet by Cherie Calbom? Susan Harries,
AT FIRST SIGHT, I thought this book was for coconut enthusiasts, who
perhaps saw its short, round, hairy physique as their idea of
perfection how refreshing not to have to trim those thighs and
squeeze the buttock muscles. But obviously that s not what it s really
The book suggests replacing all fats in your diet with coconut oil.
This, the theory goes, is meant to boost your metabolism, as well as
improving the condition of your skin. Although this book has some
reasonable new info, it needs to be treated with caution. Coconut oil
has been lambasted as a baddie because it contains huge amounts of
This is true, but there has also been mud-slinging by other
oil-producers the worse they can make coconut oil sound, the better
their product will look so politics is shown, yet again, to
influence the message we consumers receive. The anti-coconut lobby has
focused on the fat aspect: since saturated fats are blamed for heart
disease, the coconut like butter, cream and animal-fat-rich products
was marked untouchable.
What we ve not been made aware of is the other type of fat the coconut
contains: medium chain triglycerides (MCT). They re not something we
hear much about but MCT-type fats are directly absorbed through the
gut wall, high up in the intestine, and go straight to the liver. Here
they are broken down into ketones, which are a source of energy. The
theory is that the body uses these ketones as fuel, as opposed to
storing the energy as body fat, although I have to say, this hasn t
been proven to make a real difference to how much weight we gain or
Another reason why I m not certain about this diet is that ketones can
make your breath smell rather like the Atkins diet mouth . Not only
might the coconut diet give you bad breath but it could also increase
the loss of valuable minerals such as calcium from the bones.
I m also not a fan of prescriptive diets. Life isn t about being on a
diet, it s about balancing what we put in our body against what we
burn up: simple exercise and eating well.
I can t see everyone abandoning olive oil for virgin coconut oil.
First, it s hard to find (supermarkets don t stock it); second, it s
very different from olive oil and won t suit all tastes and foods;
third, its saturated fat content sets it aside from other vegetable
oils, which contain mainly healthier unsaturated fat.
So although this book tries to cajole us into using lots of coconut
oil, I d ditch it and just use a little coconut milk (easy to find) in
delicious curries and other Asian and Caribbean dishes.
IN A NUTSHELL
Principles: The Coconut Diet is based on the theory that coconut oil
helps to burn body fat faster, writes Sara Lawrence. Followers point
to the fact that the oil has been consumed for thousands of years by
peoples in the South Pacific and Thailand who are generally slim and
have low rates of heart disease and cancer. The diet broadly replaces
all trans-fatty acids and polyunsaturated oils with coconut oil;
dieters also take 2-4 tablespoons of coconut oil dissolved in a cup of
hot water 20 minutes before each meal.
A typical day
Breakfast: coconut smoothie made with coconut milk.
Lunch: coconut cream of mushroom soup made with coconut milk and
virgin coconut oil.
Dinner: Thai coconut salmon: steamed in a wok with coconut milk,
served over rice.
Snacks: sourdough bread made with coconut oil, served with coconut oil
Disgusting irresistable Dirty Harry