Coconut Oil VS Butter: Why Coconut Oil is Better than Butter
Coconut oil vs butter: which one is healthier? If you’re like most people, you are probably using butter to fry or season your favorite dishes. But have you thought about a better alternative to butter? Although fats get a bad rap because they are largely misunderstood, they are considered as essential nutrients. The fact is, the body conducts its many biological processes without fats.
There are two types of fats, the good kind called unsaturated fat and the bad kind known as saturated and trans-fat. Eating the wrong kind of fats may lead to serious conditions such as coronary heart disease and strokes because these fats raise the LDL cholesterol level in the blood. LDL cholesterol is associated with higher rates of heart disease.
Now, coconut oil and butter are a type of saturated fat. However, saturated fats are not made equally. Coconut oil is considered as a healthy fat while butter, not so much. In today's post, we are pitting coconut oil with butter to determine which type of saturated fat is healthier:
Coconut Oil vs Butter: A Comparison
Butter is comprised of 64% saturated fats. Depending on how the butter is processed, its quality is measured by the product's fat content, salt content, and freshness. Overly processed butter may be teeming with preservatives, salts, and chemicals that are harmful to the health. Of all types of butter-based products, grass-fed butter is the healthiest because it contains fewer antibiotics and it has a better nutrient profile. Generally, grass-fed butter offers more CLA and omega-3 fatty acids than regular butter.
Coconut oil is about 90% saturated fat. While coconut oil contains more saturated fat than butter, it raises the LDL or good kind of cholesterol in the blood. Unlike butter, coconut oil’s saturated fat is made up mostly of lauric acid, an essential nutrient that’s proven to support cardiovascular health.
Coconut Oil vs Butter: Why It’s Healthier for You
Coconut oil pills may contain more saturated fat than butter but the quality of the fat is different from that of butter’s saturated fat. Coconut oil’s saturated fat is composed of 50% plant-based medium-chain fatty acids while butter’s saturated fat is made from animal fat. Unlike animal fat, plant-based medium-chain fatty acids are converted quickly into energy by the body and are absorbed faster into the bloodstream. They are not stored in the cells. This means the saturated fat from coconut oil won’t lead to the development of visceral fat. The same thing cannot be said for butter’s saturated fat. It doesn't burn easily and is often absorbed by the cells as stored fat.
The plant-based medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil will not clog the arteries and cause cardiovascular diseases. Since the saturated fat in coconut oil is made up of lauric acid, it has neutral effects on the cardiovascular system. On the other hand, the saturated fat in butter is primarily made of palmitic acid, a chemical proven to increase the risk of coronary heart disease. Studies show that palmitic acid increases the plaque buildup in the arteries, which causes the arterial wall to harden over time.
Plant-based products are more eco-friendly and healthier than animal-based products. Some dairy products are laden with chemicals that are bad for the health. Butter is not an exception. Some farms are also conducting dubious or abusive farming practices. Harvesting coconut oil is a fairly sustainable practice. In addition, the deforestation practices linked with palm oil production is in no way related to the coconut oil industry. If you are concerned about the environment or you’re looking for a healthier alternative to butter, try using coconut oil or extra virgin coconut oil.
Coconut Oil vs Butter: Which is Healthier?
Butter and coconut oil pills comes from different sources but they have their own health benefits. That being said, both products contain a high amount of saturated fat so it’s best to take them in small amounts. So which is healthier? That depends on the quality of the product. Grass-fed butter contains more nutrients than coconut oil but the latter does not contain animal fat. In addition, butter is often seasoned with salt and other preservatives while coconut oil is sold in its purest form. If you want to stick to a plant-based diet, coconut oil makes a terrific alternative to butter.