If you make curries, desserts, ice-cream, yogurt, milkshake, pies, cookies or cream-based or pureed soup, I strongly encourage you to use coconut cream and use more of it because coconut cream benefits your health so much that you would never have thought of, especially when you've previously been told or taught that it makes you fat, clogs your arteries and raises your risk of stroke and heart diseases, and all sorts of unfounded crap.
1. Improve your immunity
I wonder if you've heard about the health benefits of coconut oil. You can find the exact antimicrobial compounds that coconut oil contains in coconut cream too. They're lauric acid, capric acid, caprylic acid, caproic acid, and myristic acid etc.
These fatty acids (with lauric acid as the leader) are effective fighters against viruses that cause flu, hepatitis C, measles, herpes, AIDS etc.
They also kill bacteria that cause throat infections, food poisoning, pneumonia, urinary tract infections, gonorrhea etc. Fungi and yeast that cause candida, ringworm, athlete's foot etc are no match for them too.
In short, coconut cream provides health benefits by lightening the burden of your immune system so that your body can concentrate more on other critical tasks like repairing cells and tissues, and keeping your organs like kidney, heart, liver and lungs etc optimally functional.
2. Give you energy, not fat.
About 60% of the fatty acids in coconut cream belong to the medium-chain group. Medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) are smaller in size than long-chain fatty acids (LCFAs). For this reason, MCFAs can easily penetrate cell walls and supply quick energy to cells. LCFAs, because of their longer chain, are slow to digest and transport. That's why our body tends to shove LCFAs into fat tissues as fuel reserve.
When your cells receive energy in time, they perk up and become active. Active cells step up metabolism. This means your body goes into fat-burning mode.
Having fatty acids doesn't mean it'll make you fat. It all depends on the type of fatty acids you're taking in. Most of the fatty acids in coconut cream are fat-burning, which is one of the greatest health benefits of this coconut product.
3. Slow aging
Approximately 90% of the fatty acids in coconut cream are saturated fat. And saturated fat is a natural antioxidant by itself. This means that saturated fat stops free-radical activity.
Free radicals attack connective fibers that hold the skin tissues together and make our skin firm and bouncy. When these connective fibers break down as a result of free-radical attack, our skin sags and looks old.
Stopping free-radical activity is one good way to keep your connective fibers strong and healthy. And saturated fat does the job.
Another great benefit of coconut cream on skin is that it contains 17–18 amino acids and of which, 10 of them are essential since our body cannot make them. They are histidine, arginine, leucine, isoleucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, valine, threonine and tryptophan.
We need these amino acids (together with the standard ones such as tyrosine, alanine, glycine and proline etc) to help us build and repair cells and tissues timely and effectively to minimize the damaging effect of free radicals and germs on our skin.
Though coconut cream may not carry them in large quantity, it does provide a good supplementary source of these essential and standard amino acids as the building blocks of proteins for our skin.
4. Hydrate your body
Next time after a sweaty workout, try sucking a popsicle or licking ice cream made of pure coconut cream. I did that before and it does pretty well in replenishing the loss of water and electrolytes through sweating.
The most important electrolytes contained in a typical isotonic drinks are sodium and potassium (some don't even have potassium). We need some sugars as well. And coconut cream has them all and in pretty good amount.
In other words, you probably don't need isotonic drinks at all as long as you have enough coconut cream in your food. But for a better hydration, coconut water is better since it contains a lot more sodium and potassium.
Note: Do not take in cold stuff immediately after workout or your blood vessels may suddenly constrict and upset the normal blood flow. Take it only when your body has cooled down, like after 30 mins or so.
5. Stimulate bowel movement
Depending on the brands, some coconut cream may contain a few percent of fiber. But this little amount of fiber is not the leading role in loosening your bowels though it does help to certain extent.
Remember earlier I said that the fatty acids in coconut cream provide quick energy?
Yes, when your cells get energy, every single part of your body gets motivated, including your bowels.
When your bowels move faster, your stools tend to become more watery and hence, softer because your bowels do not have enough time to extract much water from the watery waste. For this reason, your stools are able to "slide" out of the "exit" more effortlessly.
Which is why curry or cream-based soup added with coconut cream helps to detox especially when you've added lots of coconut cream to make the curry creamier, smoother and tastier.
If you're on a healthy diet like a whole food diet (meat-free), coconut cream provides your health with proven added benefits.
On top of that, substituting coconut cream for dairy cream particularly benefits those who are lactose-intolerant. But you do really have to watch out for some brands that add guar gum to make the cream creamier. Guar gum is not easy to digest. So, if you have digestive problem, choose the brand that comes without guar gum.
Another thing worth mentioning is that people always associate coconut cream with high-calorie and so it will make you fat easily. Here's the fact: 50–70% of coconut cream (depending on brands) contain water. And 15–35% contain fatty acids. What's more, most fatty acids in the cream convert easily to energy rather than being stored as body fat.
So, which are you going to believe... the fact stated right in front of you or fiction as parroted by the ignoramuses?
Last but not least, if you need to strengthen your immunity to an all-time high so that your body will become more capable of fighting even cancers and pathogens, coconut oil is what you need for stronger health protection.
That's because coconut oil has 3–5 times as much medium-chain and saturated fatty acids as coconut cream. Moreover, coconut oil is more versatile than coconut cream since you can literally add coconut oil to all kinds of food (and beverages if you don't mind having the oil floating on the surface).
Learn next: How to consume coconut oil for health benefits »