Virgin or Refined Coconut Oil: Which One Should You Choose?

One of the healthiest options for cooking you can choose is coconut oil. And when it comes to choosing, you can either use virgin or refined. But which one is better?

Yes, both refined and virgin coconut oil are healthy, but if you really want to choose a better one, here is what you need to know about them.

Refined Coconut Oil

This one is easier to find since most stores sell it. It has some other advantages too:

  • It doesn’t have a flavor or odor
  • It can be heated for a longer time before it starts smoking
  • If you want cooking without coconut flavor, this oil is for you
  • Full of healthy fatty acids, like medium-chain triglycerides

But, even though it has some advantages, this oil also has some disadvantages, and here they are:

  • It is made from rancid byproducts of oil waste from desiccated coconut flakes
  • It can go through several processes, like deodorizing and bleaching
  • It can contain harsh solvents, like lye
  • It also can contain synthetic trans-fats due to hydrogenation or partial hydrogenation

Unrefined Coconut Oil

You can find coconut oil labeled as “virgin” or even “extra virgin”. These are its advantages:

  • If you are cooking food that needs coconut flavor
  • It is full of polyphenols that prevent heart diseases and atherosclerosis
  • It is natural


Which One is Better?

Here is what you need to consider when buying a coconut oil:

Budget – Refined is cheaper.

Taste – If you don’t want coconut taste, go with refined, otherwise, go with virgin one.

Availability – Refined is more common.

Nutrients – Unrefined has more nutrients and especially the ones you can find in a coconut.

Cooking Temperature – Refined oil is better since it can reach a smoking point at 450 degrees F, while virgin burns at a lower temperature.

If you want a healthy version, buy unrefined, and if you choose refined, buy the one with fewer chemicals in it. Have a great meal!


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