Olive oil vs coconut oil

The healthy olive oil is getting stiff competition from its coconut counterpart. But which one is better? Fats are pretty confusing for a lot of folks.

In this article, we're going to talk about the fat you'd use in the kitchen to prepare your nutrient dense, tasty meals. When you're picking an oil to use, there are loads of choices available but two that generally get a lot of attention among healthy types are olive oil and coconut oil. Let's break it down and weigh up the pros and cons.


Coconut oil is actually a really good addition to your kitchen cupboard.The main benefit is that it has a high smoke point. Refined coconut oil has a smoke point of over 200 degrees centigrade. As you probably guessed, this means you can cook with it at a high temperature without it smoking. This is because coconut oil is a saturated fat which means that it's really stable and resistant to heating so it doesn't oxidise easily. The other reported benefits of coconut oil, including claims that it increases metabolic rate, eradicates hunger, decreases heart disease risk and so on, seem to be blown widely out of proportion. There isn't yet sufficient evidence that you should lather it onto everything you eat.

The bottom line is that coconut oil is great for cooking at high temperatures, but it's not a miracle fat.


A staple in the Mediterranean diet, which is often a model for eating recommended by health practitioners, olive oil is a fantastic source of fat in the diet. But is it the youthful elixir we all assume it is? You may have heard that olive oil isn't great for cooking with because it's unstable at high temperatures (unlike our aforementioned coconut oil) but the research shows this isn't actually the case. Polyunsaturated fats like vegetable oils can become unstable at moderate to high temperatures, but not monounsaturated fats like olive oil; it is much more resistant to oxidation than we had assumed.

What's more, olive oil is a great source of Vitamin E which actually increases the stability and the antioxidant capacity of refined olive oil.Another study also tested out the stability of olive oil under deep-frying conditions. It found that vegetable oil was highly susceptible to oxidation but the olive oils, especially extra-virgin olive oil, performed really well. Spanish researchers also showed olive oil was far better in this regard compared to sunflower oil.


There isn't a real winner in the olive oil versus coconut oil debate.Although coconut oil is touted as being the better option for high temperature cooking, studies have shown that olive oil doesn't fare nearly as badly as some people would suggest.

You're maybe best picking one of the two, over other oils like vegetable, sunflower or any polyunsaturated types but as to what option you go for, it comes down to preference. What do you like the taste of and what goes best with the meal you're making? Like many aspects of nutrition, there isn't a golden rule and there isn't one clear cut answer. Until there is, I'll have both in my cupboard.

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