Coconut Oil Has Had a Bad Rap!
Yes coconut oil is a saturated fat, which is bad, right? Not always. In the case of coconut oil, the saturated fat takes the form of lauric acid, which is a medium-chain fat that metabolizes more easily into energy and does not store as fat.
As for coconut oil being a saturated fat; all saturated fats are not equal. Some saturated fats like coconut oil are found naturally while others are manipulated into a saturated state through hydrogenation. This is a process where hydrogen atoms are added to the oil to arrive at the end product which is a thick, rancid oil that has a longer shelf life. They are sometimes called trans fats.
Coconut oil is powerful because of its lauric acid and medium chain fatty acids.
The composition of coconut oil elevates the LDL levels and prevents atherosclerosis. This helps repair slow neural pathways and can improve cognitive functions and memory.
Your body can use two fuels for energy – carbohydrates (sugar) and fat. When converting fats into energy, ketones are produced. Ketones come from medium chain triglycerides like those in coconut oil. 65% of coconut oil is medium chain triglycerides. These get into the liver directly for digestion (unlike long chain triglycerides which are mixed with bile and go through digestion. The medium chain triglycerides bypass the bile and go directly into the blood stream and are carried to the brain for fuel without causing a insulin spike.
Coconut oil is “thermogenic” so it can increase the energy expenditure (fat burning) capacity of your body. Studies show that the medium chain triglycerides can help you burn about 120 calories per day. Along with the fact that coconut oil reduces your appetite, this can help you lose weight.
In addition, coconut oil has great antibacterial and antiviral properties which will help you fight viruses, infections and inflammation. Lauric acid is converted into monolaruin by your body. Monolaurin is responsible for destroying viruses like Herpes and HIV, measles, gram negative bacteria, protozoa and influenza virus. A plus is that monolaurin does not have any adverse effects on your gut friendly bacteria.
A Natural Medicine
In fact, coconut oil can be considered a natural medicine. We all know it is used in many beauty products for hair and skin because of its anti fungal and antibacterial properties. But it can also be used as follows:
- Mix with baking soda for whiter teeth
- Use as a deodorant by apply under your armpits
- As a facial cleanser
- As a moisturizer
- As massage oil.
- To help fade age spots
- Can help animal bites heal
- When you have a broken bone, it can help you absorp more calcium
- Applied to bruises to reduce redness and swelling
- To heal breastfeeding bites
- To prevent itching, swelling and redness from bug bites
- To apply to chicken pox outbreaks and reduce inflammation, itching and severity of the illness
- For ear infections
- For a gargle to help with Laryngitis and sore throat
- To apply to scrapes and cuts
- To help heal jock itch
- For treatment of lice
- Helps in recovery of oral surgery and in tooth aches
- For sun burns
- For vaginal dryness
Ways to Take Coconut Oil
I have read that as a diabetic and with a fatty liver like mine, I should be taking about 3-6 tablespoons of coconut oil a day. So I eat a couple of tablespoons daily and put more into my food.
- It can be used as a 1:1 butter replacement
- Freeze it in an ice cube tray and pop into your drinks
- Melt it and add to soups, juices and tea
- Combine it with extra virgin olive oil for a salad dressing
- Use to replace your regular oil when roasting meats and vegetables.
- Eaten with a spoon.
- How much to take:
Which Kind of Coconut Oil to Purchase
Coconut oil can be refined or unrefined. Unrefined is made from fresh coconuts and does not undergo any change from heat processing. It is the purest form that hasn’t been processed at all. This is the best kind
Refined coconut oil is made of d\copra or dried coconut flakes which are refined and beached to produce a tasteless, colorless and odorless oi. Some health benefits are lost during the process of refining.
There is also fractionated, cold pressed, centrifuged and hydrogenated/partially hydrogenated coconut oil. These are to be avoided as they are synthetic trans fats.
Amounts to take
Pounds Daily dosage
100+ 2 1/2 tbsp
125+ 3 tbsp
150+ 3 1/2 tsbp
175+ 4 tbsp
Note: Much of the information provided in this post is credited to the book “Coconut Oil and Apple Cider Vinegar: 28 Mind Blowing Uses for Coconut Oil and Apple Cider Vinegar” by Dr. Thomas Hunter.
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