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News :: Education : Environment : Human Rights : Race : Social Welfare
Tree of Life - Coconut Oil
by Karen Smith
18 Nov 2008
Coconut Oil SLAMMED – Soybean Growers make a KILLING
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If coconut oil is so good, why does it have a bad reputation?
The simple reason is MONEY and GREED.
Everybody knows coconut oil is a saturated fat.
We are constantly told to reduce our saturated fat intake.
The words saturated fat have become almost synonymous with heart disease.
Very few people know the difference between the medium-chain saturated fatty acids in coconut oil and the long-chain saturated fatty acids in meat and other foods.
To most people, saturated fat is saturated fat - an evil substance lurking in foods waiting for the opportunity to attack and strike you down with a heart attack.
Even medical professionals do not know there is a difference. Most do not know there is more than on type of saturated fat.
Unfortunately, many health care workers and health and fitness writers only repeat what they hear and have no understanding of fats and how they affect the body.
Only recently has the truth about coconut oil been reemerging.
As far back as the 1950's, research began to show the health benefits of coconut oil. For many years it was considered a good oil with many nutritional uses.
So how did coconut oil become a despised, artery clogging villain?
Much of the credit goes to the AMERICAN SOYBEAN ASSOCIATION (ASA).
It began in the mid-1980s.
At the time, the media were stirred into a frenzy, warning the public about a newly discovered health threat - tropical oils.
Coconut oil, they proclaimed, was a saturated fat and would cause heart attacks.
Everywhere you turned, any product that contained coconut or pal oil was criticized as being unhealthy.
In response to the seemingly overwhelming public response, movie theaters began cooking their popcorn in soybean oil.
Food makers began switching form the tropical oils they had used for years to soybean oil.
Restaurants stopped using tropical oils in favor of soybean and other vegetable oils.
By the early 1990s, the tropical oils market had dwindled to a fraction of what it once was.
The promoters of the media blitz declared victory in their fight against tropical oils.
The war of oils made every man, woman, and child in America it victim.
Tragically, the oil that replaced coconut and palm oils was hydrogenated vegetable oil (principally from soybeans), one of the most health damaging dietary oils in existence.
The only people who actually benefited from this new health craze were those in the soybean industry, who made a KILLING.
The entire campaign was carefully orchestrated plan by the AMERICAN SOYBEAN ASSOCIATION to eliminate competition from tropical oils.
These hydrogenated replacements contain as much saturated fat as the tropical oils, but they are not made from easily digested medium-chain fatty acids like those found in coconut oil.
They are composed of TOXIC trans fatty acids.
The result has altered vegetable oils.
We are all victims, because when we eat foods containing these oils our health suffers, are work suffers and our family suffers.
During the 1960x and 1970x, research indicated that some forms of saturated fat increase blood cholesterol. Since elevated cholesterol is recognized as a risk factor in the development of heart disease, saturated fat was, consequently, regarded as an undesirable food.
We were advised to reduce our intake of it.
The prevailing opinion was that the less saturated fat you ate, the better.
Capitalizing on the public's FEAR of saturated fat and its perceived association with heart disease, the AMERICAN SOYBEAN ASSOCIATION set out to crate a health crisis.
The crisis they planned would be so terrifying it would literally scare people away from using tropical oils.
In 1986 the AMERICAN SOYBEAN ASSOCIATION sent a Fat Fighter Kit to soybean farmers encouraging them to write government officials, food companies, and so on, protesting the encroachment of highly saturated tropical fats like palm and coconut oils.
The wives and families of some 400,000 soybean growers were encouraged to fan out across the country in a lobbying effort touting the health benefits of soybean oil.
Well-meaning but misguided health groups such as the Center for Science in the Public Interest 9CSPI) joined in the battle, issuing news releases referring to palm, coconut, and palm kernel oils as artery clogging fats.
The CSPI, a nonprofit consumer activist group, had been criticizing saturated fats since its founding in the 1970s.
Like most nutrition advocates at the time, they mistakenly believed that all saturated fats were the same and attacked them with a vengeance.
Encouraged by the publicity generated by the AMERICAN SOYBEAN ASSOCIATION, they began to intensify their attack.
The tropical oils, being highly saturated, were severely criticized in their promotional literature, news releases, and lobbying efforts.
It seemed the CSPI considered saturated fat to be the worst evil ever to beset humankind.
The AMERICAN SOYBEAN ASSOCIATION had found a powerful, vocal ally in its campaign to take over the tropical oils market.
For a group that claimed to be an advocate for responsible nutritional education, the CSPI was surprisingly ignorant regarding saturated fats, especially concerning coconut oil.
Instead of informing the public about the truth regarding saturated fats, they only succeeded in strengthening misconceptions and falsehoods.
The CSPI's lack of knowledge concerning lipid biochemistry is revealed in a booklet they published called Saturated Fat Attack.
While laypeople and many health care professionals may have been fooled by the information in this booklet, nutritional biochemist Mary G. Enig, PHD, says - There were lots of substantive mistakes in the booklet, including errors in the description of the biochemistry of the fats and oils and completely erroneous statements about the fat and oil composition of many of the products.
Most people would not have known this.
The booklet and other inaccurate information distributed by the groups succeeded in convincing many to completely shun tropical oils.
The CSPI's lack of accurate scientific knowledge made them an unsuspecting puppet for the AMERICAN SOYBEAN ASSOCIATION.
in October 1988, the Nebraska millionaire Phil Sokolof, a recovered heart attack patient and founder of the National Heart Savers Association, jumped on the media bandwagon.
He began running full page newspaper advertisements accusing food companies of poisoning America by using tropical oils with high levels of saturated fat.
Radically anti-saturated fat, he staged a blistering national ad campaign attacking tropical oils as a health danger.
One ad showed a coconut bomb with a lighted wick and cautioned consumers that their health was threatened by coconut and palm oils.
Before long, everybody believed that coconut oil caused heart disease.
Food manufacturers joined in too.
Hoping to profit from the anti-tropical oils sentiment, they tried to add labels to their products that read
Contains no Tropical Oil.
The FTC ruled such labels illegal because the statement implied a health claim, which portrayed the product as being better for not having tropical oil.
There was no evidence to back up the claim.
This work is in the public domain