I heard about 2 years ago, whilst looking for a natural fat burner that Matt Lovell, the nutritionist for Britain’s rugby team was supplementing the team’s diet with the oil.
Lovell says coconut oil helps raise metabolism and burn fat, which helped rugby players increase muscle mass. He says in the first year of using coconut oil as a supplement, members of the rugby team shed fat and gained muscle. In 2007, the team carried an average of 4.4 pounds of extra muscle weight than did the members of the 2003 team. Lovell says he understands skepticism about eating fat to lose fat, but his experience supports the premise.
This result is due to the oil containing lesser calories than other oils, its fat content is easily converted into energy and it does not lead to accumulation of fat in the heart and arteries. Coconut oil really does work wonders in boosting energy and endurance, and enhancing the performance of athletes and clients.
However that was just a drop in the ocean, research shows that the health benefits of coconut oil include hair care, skin care, stress relief, maintaining cholesterol levels, weight loss, increased immunity, proper digestion and metabolism, relief from kidney problems, heart diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes, HIV and cancer, dental care, and bone strength……WOW, what a complete natural remedy.
Today in countries where coconut oil is still widely used, heart and vascular disease remain uncommon.
These benefits of coconut oil can be attributed to the presence of lauric acid, capric acid and caprylic acid, and its properties such as antimicrobial, antioxidant, antifungal, antibacterial, soothing, etc……
The antiviral properties of lauric acid were first discovered when researchers were investigating the anti-infective properties of human breast milk. Human and mammalian breast milk are rich in lauric. These fatty acids and monoglycerides provide protection against infections to babies, whose immune systems are still developing.
When nursing mothers include coconut oil in their diet, the level of these fatty acids in their breast milk can triple.
The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin which is claimed to help in dealing with viruses and bacteria causing diseases such as herpes, influenza, cytomegalovirus, and even HIV. It also helps in fighting harmful bacteria such as listeria monocytogenes and heliobacter pylori, and harmful protozoa such as giardia lamblia. As a result of these various health benefits of coconut oil, though its exact mechanism of action was unknown, it has been extensively used in Ayurveda, the traditional Indian medicinal system.
Let us now explore the benefits of coconut oil in detail:
There is a misconception spread among many people, that coconut oil is not good for the heart. This is because it contains a large quantity of saturated fats. However, coconut oil is beneficial for the heart.
It contains about 50% lauric acid, which helps in preventing various heart problems including high cholesterol levels and high blood pressure. The saturated fats present in coconut oil are not harmful as it happens in case of other vegetables oils. It does not lead to increase in LDL levels. It also reduces the incidence of injury in arteries and therefore helps in preventing atherosclerosis.
Coconut oil is very useful in reducing weight. It contains short and medium-chain fatty acids that help in taking off excessive weight. It is also easy to digest and it helps in healthy functioning of the thyroid and enzymes systems. Further, it increases the body metabolism by removing stress on pancreases, thereby burning out more energy and helping obese and overweight people reduce their weight. Hence, people living in tropical coastal areas, who eat coconut oil daily as their primary cooking oil, are normally not fat, obese or overweight.
Internal use of coconut oil occurs primarily as cooking oil. Coconut oil helps in improving the digestive system and thus prevents various stomach and digestion related problems including irritable bowel syndrome. The saturated fats present in coconut oil have anti microbial properties and help in dealing with various bacteria, fungi, parasites, etc., that cause indigestion. Coconut oil also helps in absorption of other nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and amino acids.
Coconut oil is also good for the immune system. It strengthens the immune system as it contains antimicrobial lipids, lauric acid, capric acid and caprylic acid which have antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties. The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin which is claimed to help in dealing with viruses and bacteria causing diseases such as herpes, influenza, cytomegalovirus, and even HIV.
Coconut oil is very effective against a variety of infections due to its antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial properties. According to the Coconut Research Center, coconut oil kills viruses that cause influenza, measles, hepatitis, herpes, SARS, etc. It also kills bacteria that cause ulcers, throat infections, urinary tract infections, pneumonia, and gonorrhea, etc. Coconut oil is also effective on fungi and yeast that cause candidiasis, ringworm, athlete’s foot, thrush, diaper rash, etc.
So know you know the benefits, let us find out how to use it.
You can use coconut oil for all frying and stir frying. It is heat stable and has a shelf life of over one year. You can also use it as a direct substitute for butter, ghee, margarine and other culinary oils. When warmed (it needs to be liquefied, it solidifies at 70 degrees F) and combined with a culinary vinegar and herbs, it makes an excellent salad dressing.
Dosage: How much (Coconut Oil) lauric acid or Monolaurin is needed?
Infants probably consume between 0.3 and 1 gram per kilogram of body weight if they are fed human milk or an enriched infant formula that contains coconut oil. This amount appears to have always been protective to some degree.
Extrapolating breast milk content of lauric acid and scaling the quantity to the body weight of an adult, an estimated intake of approximately 24 grams of coconut oil per day may provide protective levels for an adult.
This is the equivalent of 3.5 tablespoons of coconut oil, 10 ounces of coconut milk or 7 ounces of raw coconut (approximately one half of a raw coconut per day).
The Dayrit study of Monolaurin and coconut oil as a therapy for HIV used dosages of 7.5 to 22 grams of monolaurin per day in three divided doses or 45 ml. (approximately 3 tablespoons) of coconut oil per day. The coconut oil and monolaurin both demonstrated a beneficial result in reducing viral loads and improving white cell counts. Growing children probably need about the same amount as adults.
Safety Precautions and Side Effects:
Coconut oil is food and can be consumed freely without any adverse effects. The only precaution is to keep your total calories within the range that is appropriate for your body type and activity level. Lauric acid from coconut oil is converted into monolaurin in the human body. Monolaurin is also considered to be a food.
I hope this helps you in making this all important choice to add this oil to your diet!
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