Oils, a very interesting topic of discussion in the last few years. And boy can it get confusing. Olive oil, grape seed oil, coconut oil, macadamia oil, sunflower oil, the list goes on and on so how do you know which oil to choose? I could go on all day about these but I’ll just cover the main 2 which people wonder about…coconut oil vs. olive oil. We break down the properties of each and explain which one is a better choice for your health.
Coconut oil vs olive oil – what’s the verdict?
Let me start with coconut oil, it’s been highlighted as the new ‘superfood’ by certain celebrity chefs. People preach that having a spoonful each day has helped them lose weight. Although, the thought of eating a tablespoon of oil in one mouthful makes me feel a bit unwell, to be honest. Perhaps its not the coconut oil itself but the increase of some fat in a person’s diet. This may mean they feel fuller for longer, therefore better controlling their portions and weight loss usually then occurs.
We are often told coconut oil is good for your cholesterol, and this is partly true. It mimics what olive oil does in improving your good (HDL) cholesterol levels. But a study found that coconut oil raises LDL cholesterol less than butter, but significantly more than unsaturated plant oils do (e.g. olive oil). This is not ideal as an increase in LDL cholesterol is atherogenic. So my suggestion…keep the coconut oil as a skin moisturiser or hair treatment!
So when you’re looking at coconut oil vs olive oil, at the end of the day, extra virgin olive oil comes out on top. A good source of omega 3’s and the type of unsaturated fat in olive oil increases your good (HDL) cholesterol, which helps to keep your bad (LDL) cholesterol low.
Olive oil is a good option to use as a salad dressing base. You can drizzle over your veggies before roasting them. Or you can use it as a dipping sauce with dukkah and grainy bread. Or lastly, it is great to even just use in cooking.