Why saturated fats are healthy and even necessary

Healthy fats are just as important as fruit and vegetables. They are indispensable part of your daily healthy diet. Extra virgin coconut oil, red palm oil, butter and extra virgin olive oil are all healthy fat choices, as long as they are unprocessed and high quality. We'll explain why that's true.

Not all saturated fats are equal

Up to three quarters of the dry part of coconut pulp consists of coconut oil/fat. It is very rich in medium chain saturated fatty acids such as lauric acid, myristic acid and palmitic acid. Although coconut oil consists of 86% saturated fatty acids, it has a different fatty acid profile than most other sources of saturated fat, which have long-chain fatty acids. Of all the vegetable oils, only palm kernel oil has a similar fatty acid profile. Saturated fats create stability and homeostasis (balance) in your body. Unsaturated and polyunsaturated fats provide vitality. Our body needs all these fats - in the right proportions.


The fat in breast milk is 45% to 50% saturated. Healthy babies need it because saturated fat is very stable, increases immune resistance and does not go off. That's how nature intended it.

Extra virgin coconut oil and coconut oil are not the same thing

Much of the coconut oil that's available is refined and made from the copra of the coconut, where the coconut pulp is dried under very high temperatures. The coconut oil is then extracted using solvents and subsequently bleached, deodorised, and refined. Important sterols, lecithin, polyphenols, carotenoids, minerals and vitamin E are removed in the refining process.

Extra virgin coconut oil is produced by naturally fermenting or mechanically pressing the pulp. Extra virgin smells and tastes like coconut, just like extra virgin olive oil tastes like olives. Extra virgin oil has a very small molecular structure, which makes it very easy to absorb, both through the intestines and through the skin.

Where does the negative public opinion on (saturated) fats come from?

In the 1960s, American physician Ancel Keys 'proved' that saturated fats led to increased cholesterol in a 7-country study, which collected data from Greece, Finland, the Netherlands, the United States, Yugoslavia, Japan and Italy. If Keys had included countries like France, Thailand, Polynesia and the Philippines in his research, he would have arrived at very different research conclusions, because the populations in those countries eat a lot of saturated fats, but suffer little from cardiovascular diseases. Ancel Keys himself retracted his earlier conclusions in 1997: they were based on tests on chickens and rabbits. Compared to humans, however, they have a very different diet and metabolism, which causes them to react differently to saturated fatty acids and cholesterol. It's like comparing apples and oranges.

Which fats should we avoid?

Trans fats: liquid fats, hardened by industrial processing
• All refined oils: 90% of all supermarket oils
• All deodorised oils or fats
• All oils rich in unsaturated and polyunsaturated fats that where heated
Rancid fats
• Almost all (non-organic) salad dressings and mayos
• Almost all margarines: base is often refined and hardened fats
• All superheated fats
• All oils packed in plastic: glass is better, for you and the environment
Oxidized fats: polymerization creates toxic components

The healthy versatility of extra virgin coconut oil

Experiment and see what pure coconut oil does for you. In the end, your own experience is more important than what Dr. Google says. Taste coconut oil, rub it on your skin, add it to your dishes, stir fry with it, fry your fries in it, mix coconut oil in your smoothies, give your dog or cat a teaspoon of coconut oil, brush your teeth with it, add shine to your hair with it, use coconut oil as lip balm, massage oil, the list goes on...

Try this delicious coconut oil recipe: Thai curry with asparagus and mushrooms.

Find out why Amanprana's extra virgin coconut oil has been N° 1 for years.