Coconut oil has been demonized by mainstream health professionals for a very long time.
It has had a bad rap because it is very high in saturated fat. This fat was viewed as bad for your health due to studies made by a few biased but highly influential scientists. Also, these initial studies used highly refined and hydrogenated coconut oils that contained trans fats.
New studies are showing that there is no association between saturated fat and heart disease. In fact, the body needs saturated fat to build vital components that ensure good health.
Unrefined coconut oil actually improves blood lipid profiles.
In a number of studies, virgin coconut oil significantly reduced total and LDL cholesterol (the bad stuff), oxidized LDL, triglycerides and increased HDL (the good) cholesterol.
It also had favourable effects on blood coagulation factors and antioxidant status.
If coconut oil was bad for you, then we should see some very sick people in populations that eat a lot of it. But that is not the case. Populations who eat a large percentage of calories from coconuts are much healthier than Western nations.
The Tokelauans ate more than 50% of calories as coconut and were the biggest consumers of saturated fat in the world. The Kitavans ate up to 17% of calories as saturated fat, mostly from coconut.
Both of these populations had no traces of cardiovascular disease.
As for cooking, coconut oil is highly resistant to oxidation at high heats. For this reason, it is the perfect oil for high-heat cooking methods like frying .
How it works in your body:
Coconut oil consists almost entirely of medium chain fatty acids.These go straight from the digestive tract to the liver, where they are turned into a quick source of energy.
The most abundant fatty acid in coconut oil is known as lauric acid. This fatty acid is then broken down into a compound called monolaurin in the body.
Lauric acid and monolaurin kill microbes like bacteria, fungi and viruses
As mentioned before, coconut oil increases HDL and lowers the LDL:HDL ratio.
Coconut oil gives proper nourishment to the thyroid gland.
There is considerable evidence that coconut oil can help you lose weight.
In a study of 40 women with abdominal obesity, coconut oil reduced waist circumference compared to soybean oil.
Medium chain fatty acids have also been consistently shown to promote weight loss in both animal and human studies:
To top it all off, coconut oil applied topically moisturizes your skin. You'll notice a difference in just a few days!