Coconut Oil And Weight Gain: 10 Facts You Need To Know
Coconut oil is one of the few foods that can be classified as a “super food.” Its unique combination of fatty acids can have profound positive effects on health.
This includes fat loss, better brain function and various other amazing benefits.
Here are the top 10 health benefits of coconut oil that have been experimentally confirmed in human studies.
In the past coconut oil has been demonized as it has saturated fat. Coconut oil has the highest amount of saturated fat known. 90% of fatty acids are being saturated.
New studies have discovered that the saturated fats are completely safe. Thousands of people have proven that the fact that it clogs arteries is just a fake story.
Additionally, coconut oil doesn’t contain your average run-of-the-mill saturated fats like you would find in cheese or steak.
The fatty acids in coconut are medium chain triglycerides, many fatty acids in one’s diet are usually long chain fatty acids, but medium chains work differently than long chains do.
They go straight to the liver from the digestive tract, where they are used as a quick source energy or turned into so-called ketone bodies, which can have therapeutic effects on brain disorders like epilepsy and Alzheimer’s.
Bottom Line: Coconut oil contains a lot of medium chain triglycerides, which are metabolized differently and can have therapeutic effects on several brain disorders.
Populations That Eat a LOT of Coconut Are Among The Healthiest People on The Planet
Coconut tends to be an exotic food in the western world as its only consumed by people who are concerned about their health.
In other parts of the world they consume coconut on a daily and have for many years.
The best example of such a population is the Tokelauans, which live in the South Pacific.
They eat over 60% of their calories from coconuts and are the biggest consumers of saturated fat in the world.
These people have great health with no signs of any future heart disease problems.
Another great example of people are the Kitavans which also eat loads of coconut.
Coconut Oil and Weight Gain: 10 Facts You Need To Know
Obesity is currently one of the biggest health problems in the world.
While some people think obesity is only a matter of calories, others (myself included) believe that the sources of those calories are critical too.
Different foods affect the body and the hormones in different ways. In this case a calorie is not a calorie.
The medium chain triglycerides that are in coconut oil boost energy rather than the same amount of calories that have long chain fats.
One study found that 15-30 grams of MCTs per day increased 24 hour energy expenditure by 5%, totaling about 120 calories per day
Bottom Line: The medium chain triglycerides in coconut oil have been shown to increase 24 hour energy expenditure by as much as 5%, potentially leading to significant weight loss over the long term.
The Lauric Acid in Coconut Oil Can Kill Bacteria, Viruses and Fungi, Helping to Stave Off Infections
Almost 50% of the fatty acids in coconut oil is the 12-carbon Lauric Acid.
When coconut oil is enzymatically digested, it forms a monoglyceride called monolaurin.
Both of the lauric acid and monolaurin is able to destroy pathogens like bacteria, viruses and fungi.
For example, these substances are able to destroy off the bacteria called Staphylococcus Aureus and yeast Candida Albicans, which is a very popular infection that humans get.
Bottom Line: The fatty acids and breakdown products in coconut oil can kill harmful pathogens, potentially helping to prevent infections.
Coconut Oil Can Kill Your Hunger, Making You Eat Less Without Even Trying
One interesting feature of coconut oil is that it can reduce your hunger.
This may be linked to the way that the fatty acids are metabolized, ketone bodies can have an appetite that reduce the effect.
One study that was conducted gave medium and long chain triglycerides to 6 healthy men.
The men had consumed MCT’s with 256 calories a day.
Another study in 14 healthy men discovered that those who ate the most MCTs at breakfast ate significantly fewer calories at lunch
These studies were small and only done for a short period of time. If this effect were to persist over the long term, it could have a dramatic influence on body weight over a period of several years.
Bottom Line: The fatty acids in coconut oil can significantly reduce appetite, which may positively affect body weight over the long term.
A ketogenic which is low carb and high in fat is currently being examined to treat many different kinds of diseases.
The diet is treating drug resistant epilepsy children.
This diet involves eating very little carbohydrates and large amounts of fat, leading to greatly increased concentrations of ketone bodies in the blood.
For some reason, this diet can dramatically reduce the rate of seizures in epileptic children, even those who haven’t had success with multiple different types of drugs.
Because the MCTs in coconut oil get shipped to the liver and turned into ketone bodies, they are often used in epileptic patients to induce ketosis while allowing for a bit more carbs in the diet
Bottom Line: The MCTs in coconut oil can increase blood concentration of ketone bodies, which can help reduce seizures in epileptic children.
Coconut Oil Can Improve Blood Cholesterol Levels and May Lower Your Risk of Heart Disease
Coconut oil contains a high amount of saturated fats, which wont hurt the blood lipid profile that people used to think.
Saturated fats raise HDL (the good) cholesterol and change the LDL cholesterol to a benign subtype
In one study in 40 women, coconut oil reduced Total and LDL cholesterol while increasing HDL compared to soybean oil
There are also rat studies showing that coconut oil reduces triglycerides, total and LDL cholesterol, increases HDL and improves blood coagulation factors and antioxidant status
This improvement in cardiovascular risk factors should theoretically lead to a reduced risk of heart disease over the long term.
Bottom Line: Studies in both humans and rats show that coconut oil improves important risk factors like Total, LDL and HDL cholesterol, which may translate to a reduced risk of heart disease.
Coconut Oil Can Protect Hair Against Damage, Moisturize Skin and Function as Sunscreen
Coconut oil can do many things besides consuming it.
For many people they used it for cosmetic purposes to help their skin and hair.
Many researchers have confirmed that coconut oil can effectively help a person with dry skin by moisturizing it and the lipid content.
Coconut oil has also worked wonder on hair, it protects the hair from being damaged and it even works 20 times better than sunscreen would.
Another way you can use it is by mouthwash or oil pulling, which has been proven by many that it eliminates bacteria in the mouth, improve oral health and decrease bad breath.
Bottom Line: Coconut oil can be applied topically as well, studies showing it to be effective as a skin moisturizer and protecting against hair damage. It can also be used as a mild form of sunscreen and as mouthwash.
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia worldwide and occurs primarily in elderly individuals.
In Alzheimer’s patients, there appears to be a reduced ability to use glucose for energy in certain parts of the brain.
Ketone bodies can supply energy for the brain and researchers have speculated that ketones can provide an alternative energy source for these malfunctioning cells and reduce symptoms of Alzheimer’s
In one 2006 study, consumption of medium chain triglycerides lead to an immediate improvement in brain function in patients with milder forms of Alzheimer’s
Other studies support these findings and medium chain triglycerides are being intensively studied as potential therapeutic agents in Alzheimer’s disease
Bottom Line: Studies show that the fatty acids in coconut oil can increase blood levels of ketone bodies, supplying energy for the brain cells of ALZHEIMER’S patients and relieving symptoms.
Coconut Oil Can Help You Lose Fat, Especially The Dangerous Fat in Your Abdominal Cavity
Coconut oil is able to decrease one’s appetite and boost fat burning, It make sense that it could help a person lose weight right?
Coconut oil has been proven to decrease belly fat, which is in the abdominal cavity and surrounding the organs.
This is the most dangerous fat in the body and is linked to many different diseases.
A study in 40 women with abdominal obesity, supplementing with 30 mL (1 ounce) of coconut oil per day lead to a significant reduction in both BMI and waist circumference in a period of 12 weeks
Another study in 20 obese males noted a reduction in waist circumference of 2.86 cm (1.1 inches) after 4 weeks of 30 mL (1 ounce) of coconut oil per day
This number may not seem too impressive on the surface, but be aware that these people aren’t adding exercise or restricting calories. They’re losing significant amounts of abdominal fat simply by adding coconut oil to their diet.