Coconut Oil

June 19, 2014: Coconut Oil

It’s enough to make your head spin. Fat is bad for you. Fat is good for you. If this were a health column, I’d be telling you how many in the health field are now saying we should be eating/drinking full-fat versions of food (whole milk) versus the slimmed-down varieties (1 percent milk). It’s dizzying to be sure.

Take coconut oil. The once-reviled oil is now being touted. The Los Angeles Times reports, “Coconut oil is being trumpeted as a miracle elixir. As a health fad, it’s dual purpose, bandied about as a head-to-toe natural beauty product and as a food that can cure what ails you.”

If you’re in the grocery business, there are two types of coconut oil that appeal to cooks and bakers: virgin and refined. Own a restaurant? According to The Times, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says the refined oil is a good “plant-based replacement for butter and stands up well in baking and sautéing.”

But perhaps the industry most excited about coconut oil is the beauty field. The oil is an excellent moisturizer. In fact a dermatologist told The Times coconut oil hydrates as well as mineral oil and reduces the chance of getting a Staph infection. She uses it to treat eczema, dermatitis and skin inflammation.

If you’re selling beauty products, stocking with shelves with coconut oil or products that contain it seems like a good bet right now.