Coconut–it’s everywhere. From coconut milk, to coconut oil, to coconut palm sugar, and not to mention coconut water, you can’t seem to get away from it. Although I don’t mind, I have always had a love for coconut. But mainly the shredded kind.
Recently with the popularity of the Paleo diet, coconut has become a star player in the world of healthy eating. I know many people have started using coconut oil for cooking and baking, and I have been known to buy coconut milk creamer from time to time as a dairy-free alternative.
But I didn’t know much about these coconut products. And to be honest all the buzz about these products really sounds too good to be true. So I started doing a little research and thought I would share it with you here in this “Coconut…So Hot Right Now” series.
This vegan-friendly milk has typically been used in Southeast Asian cooking. And I do have to say I am quite thankful for that, as Thai food happens to be one of my favorites. Plus, I might have made the best coconut cupcakes I have ever had this weekend…and coconut milk was the key ingredient.
Coconut milk is steadily gaining popularity. I see it now in the dairy aisle next to the milk and it comes in several different forms, like flavored creamer. (Although not all of these are created equal…just look at the ingredient list for this coconut milk beverage found in my local grocery store.)
Be careful though, this “milk of the gods” (as some people like to put it) is high in calories and saturated fat. Although before you get your panties in a bundle, there has been much discussion about the type of saturated fat found in coconut and whether it is actually good or bad.
Check out the discussions for yourself. Here are a few articles I found regarding coconut milk and it’s benefits.
As usual, Livestrong produces a solid overview of the nutritional information of coconut milk. I also encourage you to read some of their other posts listed under ‘People Are Reading’ like What are the Advantages of Coconut Milk vs. Dairy Milk? or The Health Benefits of Coconut Milk.
Like I said about coconut palm sugar, moderation is key. While coconut milk does have some great benefits, it is still good to be aware of your consumption especially since it does contain a nice handful of calories and saturated fat, regardless of if that fat is “good” or “bad.”
Also it is always important to read labels and ingredient lists. Like I mentioned above the coconut milk beverage at my local grocery store contains many more ingredients than just coconut milk, and those added ingredients have their own pros and cons associated with them.
The bottom line is I will keep bringing on the Thai food and coconut cupcakes, although as usual it will just keep being one of those occasional indulgences…but wonderful indulgences at that.
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