There was a time when people would find a recipe for something and stick to it almost religiously, never daring to change or substitute any of the ingredients. However, in the day and age of the internet even the most cautious of us can do a quick search for substituting say coconut oil for butter in shortbread and chances are someone has done it and written about it.
Which is good to know in light of a paper published in the journal “Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism”. The authors tested the effect of consuming coconut oil and moderate exercise on hypertensive rats, that is rats that are prone to high blood pressure. They found that “coconut oil combined with exercise training reduces blood pressure, improves baroreflex sensitivity, and reduces oxidative stress in hypertensive rats.” It also helped the rats to lose weight.
So there you go, it would have been nice to see it compared to another fat source. So delving into the literature we see that back in 2008 a paper was published in the American Journal of Nutrition in which overweight people were given a diet supplemented with either olive oil or MCT oil (Medium-chain triglyceride oil, which which is found in coconut oil). Those given the MCT oil lost more weight.
Not sure if I’m ready to spread it on my toast or put it in my coffee as some people out there are suggesting but think I might try a spoonful in my next smoothie.