Coconut oil is one ingredient which can truly be called a superfood. It’s full of essential nutrients which can treat numerous diseases and significantly improve our overall health. Here are the main health benefits of this incredible oil:
1. It contains a unique combination of fatty acids
Coconut oil is rich in saturated fat which was scrutinized in the past. However, recent studies have shown that saturated fat isn’t harmful to our health – it is actually great for our heart. Even better, the saturated fat in the oil is nothing like the one you can find in cheese or steak.
Besides saturated fat, coconut oil also contains medium-chain triglycerides which the body metabolizes quickly and efficiently. They are delivered directly to the liver where they’re turned to ketones, powerful compounds which have therapeutic properties and have been considered a potential treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.
2. Nations that consume a lot of coconut oil are significantly healthier than the rest of the world
According to studies, people who include coconut oil in their daily diet are significantly healthier than others and have a generally healthier cardiovascular system. Take the Tokelauans for example (a small nation in the South Pacific) – they get over 60% of their calories through coconut oil, and have no idea what heart disease is.
3. Coconut oil will boost your energy expenditure and help you lose weight
Although most people think that the main reason for obesity is consuming way too much calories, others know that the source of calories plays a major role as well. Different foods affect our bodies in different ways, and not all calories are created equal. The MCTs in coconut oil are the perfect calorie source – they will boost your energy expenditure and help you lose a lot of weight.
4 .Lauric acid – a powerful antibacterial compound
Coconut oil contains lauric acid, a powerful compound that can destroy any bacteria it comes in contact with. When combined with monolaurin (which the oil also contains), the unique mixture can destroy a variety of viruses, bacteria and fungi as well. According to studies, both compounds can kill the Candida Albicans yeast as well as the dangerous Staphylococcus Aureus bacterium.
5. Curbs your cravings
Coconut oil is the best snack which will curb your cravings and prevent you from overeating. This may be because of the different way the fatty acids are metabolized, or due to the ketones’ ability to curb cravings. One study examined how coconut oil affects the way our body spends calories.
The scientists fed 6 subjects with either medium or long-chain fatty acids, and the men who got the MCTs ate 256 calories less per day. Another study performed on more subjects showed the same, so it’s pretty safe to say that the oil can successfully keep cravings at bay.
6. Ketones can reduce seizures
Do you know what a keto diet is? Keto diets aim to put your body in a state of ketosis which shifts the metabolism from burning fat to burning ketones for fuel. The MCTs from coconut oil are turned to ketones in the body, which have been known to reduce epileptic attacks and seizures in children. Keto diets rely on consuming a small amount of carbs and foods rich in healthy fats, which, besides improving your overall health, will lead to a significant weight loss.
7. Coconut oil can regulate your cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease
As we already mentioned, coconut oil is rich in saturated fat which won’t harm your cardiovascular system. In fact, this fat is highly beneficial for our heart health. According to one study, it can regulate your LDL and total cholesterol levels, while also reducing your triglycerides and improving the blood coagulation factor. This will lead to significantly lower risk of heart disease and other cardiovascular problems.
8. Coconut oil hydrates the skin and prevents sun damage
Coconut oil can still provide a lot of health benefits even when not consumed. For example, rubbing it on your skin will prevent the harmful UV-rays from the sun from harming it, and will also keep it hydrated. The oil can even protect your hair, and kill the harmful bacteria in your mouth responsible for tooth decay and loss.
9. The fatty acids in the oil can treat Alzheimer’s disease
Several studies have shown that the MCTs in coconut oil are beneficial for the brain once turned to ketones in the body. Results from these studies have shown that ketones can act as fuel for the brain and improve the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease patients. At the moment, ketones are a subject of advanced studies which are trying to see if they can be used as therapeutic agents in patients suffering from milder or advanced forms of Alzheimer’s disease.
10. It will reduce your excess abdominal fat
Due to the fact that it increases energy expenditure and the rate of burning fat, coconut oil can also help you lose weight. The oil is highly effective against the abdominal fat, the most dangerous type of fat which can surround your organs and cause quite a lot of damage to the body.
A recent study examined the effect of coconut oil on 40 obese women. They were fed with 30 ml. coconut oil every day or a placebo – the results showed that the coconut oil group had significantly lower waist circumference and BMI after 12 weeks, which clearly shows that the oil can indeed help you lose weight.
Although the study was done on a pretty small scale, the women weren’t on a diet or exercising every day, so it’s pretty clear that the coconut oil was the reason for their weight loss.
If you want to get the most out of coconut oil, we suggest finding an organic brand that hasn’t been processed much. Incorporate this incredible oil in your diet and you will surely improve your overall health.