Please clear up whether avocado and coconut fats are good fats or bad fats

Some books say they are healthy fats and others say they are unhealthy fats and can increase LDL cholesterol. please clear this up.

Posted Answers


Avocado Cholesterol
Lowering cholesterol with avocado fat.

Avocado cholesterol diet can lower cholesterol by 8 percent because of the avocado fat, compared with 5 percent for the low-fat diet.

Avocado cholesterol diet is beneficial for lowering cholesterol, despite of avocado fat content and carbohydrate. The reason is that avocado is a great source of heart-healthy monounsaturated fat. The avocado fat is a type of fat that may actually help to raise levels of HDL ("good"cholesterol) which actually protects arteries, while lowering levels of LDL ("bad" cholesterol).
In case you are not familiar, HDL or the good cholesterol is the one that cleanses the arteries from the LDL or bad cholesterol build up. So, it flows naturally that the higher the HDL/good cholesterol the less is LDL/bad cholesterol.

Types of fat and avocado fat.

You need not worry about the avocado content of fat, as this fat is not harmful nor does it increase your cholesterol levels. To distinguish the types of fat, including avocado fat, you need to understand saturated fats, monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats.

Saturated fats, are those types of fat that are harmful and increase cholesterol levels. However, monounsaturated fats(avocado fat is of this type) and polyunsaturated fats, are not harmful and do not increase cholesterol levels. On the contrary monounsaturated fat and avocado fat help lower cholesterol.

Avocado cholesterol lowering effect.

According to a recent study in Brisbane, Australia reported that eating avocados daily for three weeks improved blood cholesterol in middle-aged women better than a low-fat diet did. The avocado diet reduced total cholesterol 8 percent compared with 5 percent for the low-fat diet. Most important, avocados improved the good HDL-cholesterol ratio by 15 percent.

The daily amount of avocado ranged from 1/2 avocado for small women to 1 1/2 for large women. Expected outcome: By eating avocados, heart patients could cut their risk of heart attack 10-20 percent and death rates 4-8 percent in 3-5 years.

Why avocado fat lowers cholesterol?

As mentioned above, avocado fat content is the reason to lower cholesterol since it is monounsaturated fat.

Another reason is that avocado packs more of the cholesterol-smashing beta-sitosterol (a beneficial plant-based fat) than any other fruit. Beta-sitosterol reduces the amount of cholesterol absorbed from food. So the combination of beta-sitosterol and monounsaturated fat makes the avocado an excellent cholesterol buster.

Beta-Sitosterol has an apparent ability to block the bad LDL cholesterol absorption from the intestine, resulting in lower blood cholesterol levels. The Australian study not only reported that eating either half or a whole avocado fruit per day for a month succeeded in lowering cholesterol levels, but at the same time most people in the study lost weight.

What is beta-sitosterol?

A phytosterol or plant alcohol that is literally in every vegetable we eat. We already eat this every day but we just don't get enough of it. The typical American is estimated to eat only 200-400 mg a day while vegetarians probably eat about twice this much. This is surely one of the many reasons vegetarians are healthier and live longer.

Actually the term "beta-sitosterol" in commerce refers to the natural combination of beta-sitosterol, stigmasterol, campesterol and brassicasterol as this is how they are made by nature in plants. There are no magic foods with high levels of phytosterols, but they can be inexpensively extracted from sugar cane pulp, soybeans and pine oil.

There are over 50 published medical and clinical studies done on humans and animals since the 1950s with beta-sitosterol. All of these were stringent scientific studies published in international scientific journals.

These studies establish that beta-sitosterol substantially lowers blood serum cholesterol and triglyceride levels with few or no changes in diet or exercise. Reductions of up to 50% have been reported.

Just to give you one example. A very interesting study was done at the Center for Human Nutrition in France (Ann. Nutr. Metab. 39, 1995, p. 291-5) in that healthy people with normal cholesterol levels were given beta- sitosterol to see if their normal levels could be lowered even further. We always think of studies as using unhealthy people with pathological cholesterol levels given supplements to make them normal again.

Amazingly enough the healthy people lowered their normal cholesterol levels even more with no change in diet or exercise. In fact, they were a full 10% lower in only a month. This kind of effect is really fascinating.

They said, "The present results may be of great interest in the prevention of high cholesterol diet-associated risks, especially in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. Since beta-sitosterol was so effective for people who didn't even need it, think what it will do for those people who do need to lower their blood lipids.

They concluded, "These findings suggest that a significant lowering of plasma total and LDL cholesterol can be effected by a modest dietary intake of soybean phytosterols."

 Answer by prokopton


i'm unsure about avocado oil but cold pressed coconut oil although 'saturated' is possibly the best oil on the planet & the one that has the least unhealthy changes during cooking.

 Answer by figure8

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