“The health benefits of coconut oil include hair care, skin care, stress relief, maintaining cholesterol levels, weight loss, increased immunity, proper digestion and metabolism, relief from kidney problems, heart diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes, HIV and cancer, dental care, and bone strength. These benefits of coconut oil can be attributed to the presence of lauric acid, capric acid and caprylic acid, and its properties such as antimicrobial, antioxidant, antifungal, antibacterial, soothing, etc.” - organicfacts.net
I also love to use it in Asian dishes I create at home like stir fry or pot stickers. It usually comes in jars and in a solid form, heat will make it liquid. I like to use raw coconut oil, the closer you are to nature the more health benefits you receive. I also love olive oil. It has the good kind of fat that our bodies need, however, not so tasty in most baking situations...yep, I tried it more then once! Let’s just say that you learn from my mistake and leave the olive oil to other dishes.
The other option is to ditch oil in recipes all together and substitute another food. Applesauce works well for this option but only in cakes. I have tried to do this with cookies, it created a very weird consistency! My other favorite substitute is yogurt. This works well for brownies and pancakes.
“The truth is, so many of the good things that were originally in it have been stripped out through refinement that they HAD to add a little something back in. Now here’s the really scary part. What they are adding back into your flour is actually toxic!
Iron is one of the “nutrients” added back into enriched flour, except that the type of iron that is added in is not really a nutrient at all, but is considered a metallic iron. Metallic iron is obviously not available for use by the body, and was never meant to be consumed in the first place.
Enriched flour is absorbed by the body not as wheat or a grain, in which case your body could use the energy slowly and effectively, but as a starch. That is because the wheat germ has been stripped from the flour; the FDA specifically states that enriched flour cannot have greater than 5 percent wheat germ.” - globalhealingcenter.com
My favorite baking flours are oat, quinoa, and coconut. I am always on the look out for new flours to play with. Here is the trick with alternative flours, I have noticed that they soak up more of the liquid then normal flour leaving the pastry on the dry side. To combat this problem I add a little extra of the liquid or I mix flours, 1/2 oat, 1/4 quinoa and 1/4 whole wheat. The other word of caution is with quinoa flour, if you only use this flour it leaves an “earthy” taste to the food. I suggest mixing this flour.
Bob’s Red Mill flours - http://www.bobsredmill.com/
International Harvest Coconut Oil - http://internationalharvest.com
International Harves’s Lanka Sun Coconut Sugar - http://internationalharvest.com/products/lanka-sun