Findings from one of the world’s leading authorities on fats and oils,

Dr. Mary Enig, a Ph.D. nutritionist/biochemist has undertaken much of the coconut oil research in more recent years. Dr. Enig has classified coconuts as a "functional food," which provides health benefits above and beyond the basic nutrients. She has specifically identified lauric acid as a key ingredient in coconut products.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Coconut Oil May Help Prevent Vision Loss

What's the most common cause of blindness in America? Thirty years ago, it was, it is age-related macular degeneration otherwise known as AMD.
AMD is affecting more than 10 million Americans... and caused when normal cell functions in the eyes are disrupted. Since the fatty cells in our eyes are a result of the oils we eat, it is extremely important which oils we use in our kitchen. Most of us have shelves filled with polyunsaturated vegetable oils not just in cooking or salads but also in any sauce, dip, bread, cracker, cake mix, or frozen dinner. Yet, these polyunsaturated vegetable oils are very susceptible to lipid peroxidation.
What is lipid peroxidation? Lipid peroxidation is a chemical process that causes fats to become rancid.  Rancid oils create destructive free radicals that literally rip other molecules apart, causing irreversible damage to cells. Free radicals interfere with normal cell function in the eye which can lead to macular degeneration. New research is showing that AMD may be preventable:   

"Saturated fats are very resistant to peroxidation. A high concentration of saturated fat in eye tissue can protect against lipid peroxidation associated with AMD. Coconut oil is higher in saturated fat than any other dietary fat. For this reason, it is very stable and highly resistant to peroxidation. It is so stable that it acts as a protective antioxidant and helps protect against the formation of free radicals."
For a more healthy lifestyle and to defend yourself against age-related macular degeneration:
1. Avoid polyunsaturated oils in your diet.
2. Use coconut oil and other healthy saturated fats for your food preparation.
3. Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables that are high in antioxidant nutrients.

For references and the full article from the Healthy Ways Newsletter, Volume 2 Number 2 by Dr. Bruce Fife, click the following link:

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Tempura-Style Coconut Shrimp

10-12 large fresh or frozen shrimp (if frozen, thaw quickly in a bowl of tepid water)
1/2 cup regular white flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper (to make your shrimp spicy)
1 egg
1/3 cup ice water
1/2 cup dry shredded unsweetened coconut
1 cup coconut oil

Remove shells from shrimp, but leave tails on for easier cooking and eating. Set aside.
Make the batter by first mixing the dry ingredients together: flour, baking powder, salt, and cayenne pepper (if using).
Crack the egg into the flour mixture, then add the ice water, stirring to break the yolk and form a fairly smooth batter (don't worry if there are a few small lumps).
Deep fry shrimps at about 375 F, until they are brown.

Serves 4 as an appetizer, tapas plate, or party food.
Excellent eaten on its own, or served with a dip. ENJOY!

Coconut Bar

What's Up? 15th Annual Coconut Festival 2011 - Kapaa, Hawaii - October 1 & 2