Raw Cows Milk: A Full Dairy Alternative But At Great Risk
Thinking about switching to raw cows milk, also known as unpasteurized milk? It has about the same amount of calories, saturated fat, and cholesterol as regular dairy milk. But pregnant women and children should avoid drinking raw milk and eating dairy products such as cheese made from raw milk, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. Since raw milk doesn’t go through the process of pasteurization that kills potentially harmful bacteria like salmonella, listeria, and E. coli people with compromised immune systems are at higher risk of getting foodborne illness from it, though it has the potential to sicken anyone.
Sweetened Fortified Coconut Milk
Many coconut milk products you’ll find in the refrigerated section are fortified with nutrients like calcium and vitamins A, B12 and D. They also contain less fat. However, these products typically contain a lot of added sugar and tend to have very small amounts of coconut.
One hundred grams of a sweetened, fortified coconut milk beverage typically supply 2.1 grams of fat, 0.2 gram of protein, 2.9 grams of carbohydrates and 2.5 grams of sugar. Such coconut milk beverages have few of the same nutrients compared to natural coconut milk. Instead, they contain vitamins and minerals like:
- 14 percent of the DV for calcium
- 7 percent of the DV for vitamin A
- 52 percent of the DV for vitamin B12
- 5 percent of the DV for vitamin D
Given how different coconut milk products can be, you should be careful about the product you select. You’re likely to get more of coconut milk’s benefits if you opt for a natural, unsweetened product.
What You Need To Know About Coconut Milk
First and foremost: The coconut milk you now find in the dairy case next to the soy milk, cows milk, and nut milks is not like the one you find in a can down the center aisle near the soy sauce. Despite the name, canned and carton-ed coconut milks are two very different products with two very different purposes. When it comes to cooking, stick with the can. When it comes to drinking, its the refrigerated carton youll want to seek out.
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Whats The Best Way To Use Coconut Milk
This creamy liquid can be enjoyed in a variety of dishes, from soups and stews to desserts and smoothies.
I prefer using a canned organic version and adding this to flavorful Asian curry dishes and vegetable soups for added creaminess, Dr. Naidoo says.
Although there may be an association with coconut milk and curry dishes, you can use for baking or as a cream substitute in some recipes.
Just keep portion sizes in mind.
A small amount of coconut milk goes a long way, so if you are trying to make food or beverages richer, you can use a small amount to make your food more tasty and satisfying, says Greebel.
One thing to keep in mind: the two types of coconut milk cant be used interchangeably when it comes to cooking. That has to do with how theyre each processed, Greebel explains.
Busting Food And Cholesterol Myths
- Healthy Tips
Changing the foods we eat is one of the biggest and best steps we can take to lower our cholesterol levels and keep our hearts happy. And while most of us know that chocolate, cakes, pastries and sausages arent good dietary choices, with all the myths and misinformation out there about the best and worst foods to eat for high cholesterol, it can sometimes be tricky to sift the fact from fiction. We at Benecol® have come to the rescue with our myth-busting facts on which foods we should or shouldnt be eating to achieve healthier cholesterol levels – prepare to be surprised!
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Which Milk Is Best
Whole milk. 2%. 1%. Skim. Almond. Rice. Coconut. Chocolate. Almond-Coconut. Ai yai yai!
Is it any wonder that people are confused these days about which milk is best for health? On supermarket shelves are seemingly endless varieties. Get answers.
With so many milks to choose from, whats truly best for your health? Find out, and learn a surprising fact about 1% and 2% milk.
To help streamline your grocery shopping, the registered dietitians and doctors at the Pritikin Longevity Center recently scrutinized the many types of milks currently available.
Here are their recommendations for helping you decide which milk is best, which ones are passable, and what ought to just remain on the shelf.
Is Coconut High In Cholesterol
You’ll only get cholesterol in your diet from animal-based foods. Coconut is naturally free of cholesterol, whether you have raw coconut meat, coconut milk, coconut water or coconut oil. The controversy behind the link of coconut and cholesterol, however, lies in its saturated fat content. Unlike most other plant foods, coconut is very high in saturated fat, which, in turn, could have an effect on your blood cholesterol levels.
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How A Meal Kit Can Help
Meal kits can cut down on the stress of shopping, by sending you all of the ingredients for a meal, in the exact amounts you need, along with instructions on how to cook it. This cuts down on the effort of planning and reduces food waste, while also encouraging you to try new recipes.
This is also a way to ease into healthier habits, whether its eating more unprocessed foods or cooking more often. Its not about being perfect its about doing a little better and a little better, says Kennedy.
Meal kits can also serve as a base, with room for altering them to suit your particular needs. There is so much flexibility with a meal kit, Kennedy says. You can look for places to add in vegetables, serve it with a side of fruit, or add in beans to a salad or to a dish. You can also swap in whole grains for white grains. Dont be too literal, Kennedy says.
Coconut: Good Fat Or Bad
Mixed messages abound about coconut and health. Is it a fatty treat, to be eaten with care? Or a miracle food, as some websites claim?
Much can be said about the pleasures of coconut. Certainly the cuisines of a large number of countries, from India to Indonesia, would be much the poorer without it. But would they be healthier?
Coconut is one of those foods that seems to ping-pong between the good food and bad food list, and if youre confused about this, dont worry even the experts cant quite agree.
The confusion starts because of the differences between the use of coconut oil in cooking, and the use of coconut milk or coconut flesh. Both the American Heart Association and the National Heart Foundation recommend avoiding the use of coconut oil for cooking, but both their websites include recipes that contain coconut milk, albeit a reduced-fat version.
Despite the fuzzy perception that all things plant must be better for us, oil made from coconuts actually contains a whopping 85 to 90 per cent saturated fat. Saturated fats, usually the dominant type in animal foods, are generally regarded as the baddies when it comes to heart disease.
Even reduced-fat coconut milk contains about 10 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams, compared to about 2.3 grams per 100 ml in reduced-fat cows milk.
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How To Make Coconut Milk
Many people feel that canned or boxed coconut milk cant compare to the homemade kind. Luckily, you can easily make your own full-fat coconut milk at home by purchasing fresh, young coconuts. This also ensures your coconut milk is free from any artificial ingredients or preservatives.
Is raw coconut good for you? You bet. Look for fresh, mature coconuts in the refrigerated section of health food stores, or try using coconut meat thats been removed from the shell already. Just make sure to find coconuts or coconut meat that are still fresh. Also ensure it is either vacuum-sealed or opened within the past three to five days. The fresher the coconut is, the longer the coconut milk lasts.
Here is an overview of how to make coconut milk:
How To Prepare Coconut Milk And Coconut Cream
Coconut milk and cream can be used in a variety of flavorful dishes. Here are just a few ways you can incorporate them into your cooking or baking:
Add coconut cream to savory sauces for sweetness and flavor.
Blend coconut milk into smoothies.
Drizzle coconut cream on top of soups.
Stir coconut milk into cocktails to make them creamy
Whip coconut cream and spoon it on top of desserts
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Coconut Milk And Cholesterol
Because there is so much disagreement on whether the fats in coconut can increase your cholesterol, the best thing to do is consume coconut products in moderation. If you want to drink large amounts of coconut milk, you should make sure that the rest of your diet contains primarily polyunsaturated fats, which are good for your heart.
If you are concerned about coconut milk and cholesterol but still want to drink this beverage, you can always purchase fortified products that have lower amounts of coconut. While these are not nutritionally comparable to the more natural products, they are certainly lower in fat. Just make sure you only select unsweetened options.
Coconut Milk Nutrition Facts And Health Benefits
Coconut milk is a popular ingredient in soups and drinks. It is different from coconut water or coconut cream. To make coconut milk, the meat of the coconut is grated and pressed. The fatty cream that results is blended with water. Coconut milk is high in calories and usually, it is consumed in small amounts .
Like dairy milk, coconut milk can be higher or lower in fat depending on how it is blended. Most of the fat in the liquid is saturated fat. A typical serving of coconut milk is not a good source of carbs, protein, or any micronutrients.
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Goat’s Milk: Less Potent Than Cows Milk
Goat’s milk can be a good option if you want a beverage with a similar nutritional profile to whole cows milk but you have trouble digesting lactose. On the downside, a 1-cup serving of goat’s milk is high in calories and saturated fat , and it also contains 27 mg of cholesterol.
According to Mayo Clinic, limiting saturated fats in your diet can help reduce your blood cholesterol levels and lower your risk of coronary artery disease. High levels of cholesterol in your blood can lead to the plaque buildup in your arteries, called atherosclerosis a condition that increases your risk of stroke and heart attack.
Butuza notes that it’s difficult to find a low-fat version of goat’s milk, and that it has fewer essential vitamins and minerals than cow’s milk. Theres a lot less folate and B12 vitamin in goat’s milk, Butuza says. And if its raw, she says, “Theres a risk of foodborne illness unless you have a goat in your backyard.
Antioxidant Protection From Disease
Coconut contains phenols, which are antioxidants.
During metabolism and other processes, the body produces waste products called reactive oxygen species, or free radicals.
Free radicals that remain in the body can cause oxidative stress, resulting in damage that may lead to various health conditions, including cancer and heart disease.
Antioxidants can help the body fight or remove free radicals, protecting it from disease.
The authors of a 2015 study found that Malaysian coconut milk had higher antioxidant activity than milk from goats and cows.
concludes that the phenolic content in coconut could help protect lipids, proteins, and DNA in the body from damage due to oxidative stress.
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Oat Milk Is A Creamy Milk Substitute
Oat milk is another popular non-dairy milk substitute. Made from soaked and blended steel-cut oats, it is fat-free, cholesterol-free. and lactose-free.
Proponents of oat milk say it is creamier than other non-dairy milk substitutes. People with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity can drink oat milk, however, need to check the packaging to ensure gluten-free oats were used.
So Which Food Products Lower The Level Of Cholesterol Naturally
Animal products with a high fat content, such as fatty meat, whole milk, cheese or butter, as well as heavily sweetened foods and large amounts of alcohol, increase the level of cholesterol and should therefore be avoided. But which foods have the opposite effect and have a positive impact on your cholesterol levels? We have summarised the top 6 for you here:
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How To Measure Changes In Cholesterol
There are 2 different types of cholesterol which have opposite health implications.
LDL cholesterol is so-called bad cholesterol, linked with increased risk of heart disease and stroke.
HDL cholesterol is good cholesterol, thought to be beneficial because it carries away LDL from the blood stream.
Conventional scientific thinking would suggest coconut oil is bad for health because it is rich in saturated fat, and evidence suggests that saturated fat raises LDL levels.
Therefore, the health claims that coconut oil is good for your heart run counter to the body of scientific evidence. However, it is now marketed on a large scale, and its health effects in a British population are untested.
So is coconut oil good, or bad, for cholesterol? Trust Me Im a Doctor wanted to find out.
Cheese And Custard Production
Coconut milk can also be used in cheese and custard production, substituting at most 50% of milk without lowering the overall quality of the products. By mixing skim milk with coconut milk, one procedure develops cheeses- including a garlic-spiced soft cheese called queso de ajo, a Gouda cheese substitute, and a Roquefort substitute called “Niyoblue” .
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Effects On Cholesterol And Heart Health
Because coconut milk is so high in saturated fat, people may wonder if its a heart-healthy choice.
Very little research examines coconut milk specifically, but one study suggests that it may benefit people with normal or high cholesterol levels.
An eight-week study in 60 men found that coconut milk porridge lowered bad LDL cholesterol more than soy milk porridge. Coconut milk porridge also raised good HDL cholesterol by 18%, compared to only 3% for soy .
Most studies of coconut oil or flakes also found improvements in bad LDL cholesterol, good HDL cholesterol and/or triglyceride levels (
Notably, some brands use BPA-free packaging, which is recommended if you choose to consume canned coconut milk.
Coconut milk is likely safe for most people who are not allergic to coconuts. It is best to choose BPA-free cans.
Although coconut milk is nutritious, its also high in calories. Keep this in mind when adding it to foods or using it in recipes.
Treatment And Medication Options For High Cholesterol
Although having high cholesterol numbers can contribute to the long-term risk of heart attack and stroke, you can lower your cholesterol through changes in your lifestyle habits, including adopting a heart-healthy diet, increasing your physical activity level, and quitting smoking. These long-term lifestyle changes can also prevent your cholesterol levels from changing in the first place.
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Coconut Milk Vs Almond Milk
According to Statista , almond milk is the most popular plant-based milk alternative in the US. Unsweetened almond milks tend to have far fewer calories as well as much lower fat and protein contents than coconut milk. When it comes to nutrient values, theyre roughly comparable in both drinks, although this obviously varies between brands. As such, almond milk may be a better option for people whose primary goal is weight loss, whereas coconut milk would suit individuals who are after a more substantial drink.
Both almond and coconut milk perform well in a variety of meals and drinks. However, coconut milk tends to have a stronger taste and more overwhelming aroma that may overpower other ingredients, so it may need to be used more sparingly in cooking.
From an environmental perspective, the impact of growing coconuts and almonds is fairly similar in terms of their water and land use, according to a review published in the Global Food Security journal. So it really comes down to your health goals and personal preference.
Coconut Oil Bad For Ldl Cholesterol
But other long-chain saturated fatty acids, like the ones that make up most of the saturated fat in coconut, palm kernel, and palm oils , do in fact raise LDL cholesterol considerably. These saturated fats are called palmitic, myristic, and lauric acids. They also make up most of the saturated fatty acids in meat, poultry, and dairy fats like milk, butter, and cheese.
Other saturated fats that have little impact on LDL cholesterol levels include medium-chain varieties like caproic, caprylic, and capric acids. A small percentage of the saturated fat in coconut oil, about 10%, is made up of these less harmful saturated fatty acids, but virtually all the rest of coconut oils saturated fat is made up of the long-chain varieties that send LDL soaring.
And coconut oil is full of these artery-busting long-chain varieties by the sheer fact that theres such a huge percentage of saturated fat, 92%, packed into coconut oil to begin with.
Ounce for ounce, coconut oil has more saturated fat than butter, beef tallow, or lard.So coconut oil raises LDL cholesterol as much or more than animal fats, cautions Dr. Kenney.
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