Coconut is widely used for cooking and skin care purposes, but the term ‘virgin’ coconut oil and ‘regular’ coconut oil has always confused people.
Coconut oil contains some amazing components that makes it preferable among most Asian countries. The lauric acid and medium-chain triglycerides type of saturated fats in the oil are known to help burn fat, provide an instant source of energy, and are highly beneficial for the skin.
But consumers often get puzzled between which coconut oil brand offers the most health benefits, and how is virgin coconut oil different from regular coconut oil? This blog will clear up all of these confusions and more. If you are thinking about adding coconut oil to your diet or if you are already a fan of this oil, this blog will provide you with some additional information.
Extraction Procedure: Cold Pressed & Virgin Coconut Oil
The virgin coconut oil is extracted from fresh coconut milk.
- Fresh coconut is finely grated and fed into the machine.
- The machine is then used to extract coconut milk.
- The milk is allowed to settle for a day.
- The settled milk is then separated into three layers: the top layer is curd, the second layer is oil, and the bottom layer is water.
- The oil from the second layer is then extracted and set aside to allow the moisture to evaporate, resulting in pure coconut oil.
On the other hand, regular coconut oil is extracted through a cold-pressing procedure.
- First, the coconut is dried out in the sun.
- The dried coconut kernel or ‘copra’, is then cold-pressed to get the oil.
Virgin coconut oil has been shown to increase good cholesterol. It contains good medium-chain fatty acids, which are beneficial to one's health. Regular coconut oil may contain some trans fat because it is hydrogenated and cold-pressed.
A tablespoon of both oils contain:
- Calories: 117
- Total fat: 14 grams
- Saturated fat: 12 grams
- Trans fat: 0 grams
- Cholesterol: 0 grams
- Sodium: 0 grams
- Total carbohydrates: 0 grams
- Protein: 0 grams
- Lauric acid
- Myristic acid
- Palmitic acid
- Monounsaturated fats
- Polyunsaturated fats
- Plant sterols
- Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs)
Because both oils appear similar, there is no noticeable difference between virgin and cold-pressed coconut oil. However, the latter one might have a slightly brighter color.
Aroma & Flavor
Virgin coconut oil has a more nutty flavor and tastes delicious whereas the cold compressed one has a more neutral flavor.
There is no doubt that virgin coconut oil is purer than compressed one. As regular coconut oil contains an artificial scent whereas virgin has a more original nutty smell and flavor.
The virgin coconut oil is more expensive than the cold-compressed one, and the reason for the price difference is now abundantly obvious to you. You now understand that you are paying for the purest form of oil, which contains all of the benefits of its natural form.
Why Should I Use Virgin Coconut Oil in Food?
Helps Losing Weight: Coconut oil is rich in lauric acid which is a kind of saturated fat in its natural state. According to the experts, lauric acid is completely converted into energy and none of its parts are being stored as fat. Hence consumption of coconut oil in food is advisable for weight loss.
Good For Skin & Hair: Another virgin coconut oil benefit is that it is light in weight and has amazing moisturizing quality. Hence the oil locks the moisture and the antimicrobial and antioxidant properties improve the health of the skin.
Improves Brain Function: The oil is beneficial for patients of Alzheimer's, as the component ketones contained in the oil is known to provide energy to the brain cells.
Improves Good Cholesterol Level: There are two types of cholesterol in our body, the HDL cholesterol is known as the “good cholesterol”, whereas, LDL cholesterol is known as “bad cholesterol.” Virgin coconut oil benefits in boosting the good cholesterol of your body.
To maintain a healthy body, choose your oil wisely. Hopefully, this blog has provided you with some interesting facts, and you can now choose your oil with greater confidence.