Why is coconut oil so special among the others? Lots of research continues to confirm that coconut oil has numerous benefits. Pacific Island inhabitants who get 30-60% of their total caloric intake from fully saturated coconut oil have almost non-existent rates of cardiovascular disease!
Coconut oil is also helpful for pregnant women, nursing mothers, the elderly, people with digestive disturbances, athletic endurance and those people who just want to enhance their overall health.
One of the reasons for this oil’s health benefits, is that it’s rich in lauric acid which converts in your body to monolaurin — a compound also found in breast milk that strengthens a baby’s immunity. It raises your body’s metabolism and fights off pathogens such as viruses, bacteria and fungi. Capric acid, another coconut fatty acid present in smaller amounts, is another antimicrobial component.
- Its good for the thyroid; it has been clearly established for over 80 years now that suppression of the thyroid raises serum cholesterol (and increases mortality from infections, cancer, and heart disease), while restoring the thyroid hormone brings cholesterol down to normal.
- Discoveries show that its good for Alzheimer’s disease, giving brain fuel that fights brain atrophy from dementia;
- Coconut oil cuts body fat! Studies have also found that the medium chain fatty acids (MCT’s) found in coconut oil promote weight loss, and are helpful for shedding adipose fat in particular. Rats fed long chain fatty acids (LCTs, found in vegetable oils) stored body fat, while rats fed MCTs (found in coconut oil) reduced body fat and improved insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance. Specifically, MCT’s were found to lower the expression of the “fat gene”.
- Another study found that MCT’s increased energy expenditure and lowered adipose fat in overweight men. Here, 24 overweight men consumed diets rich in either MCT or LCT for 28 days, and those consuming MCTs lost more weight and had more energy than those consuming LCTs (in this case olive oil, as opposed to soy bean oil).
Most of the conventional advice relating to coconut oil and cholesterol are not true and misleading. Coconut oil has been repeatedly shown to be beneficial rather than detrimental on cholesterol levels and heart health. As mentioned earlier, coconut oil does both; it balances your thyroid and normalizes your cholesterol levels.
“As far as the evidence goes… coconut oil, added regularly to a balanced diet, lowers cholesterol to normal by promoting its conversion into pregnenolone”. Coconut-eating cultures in the tropics have consistently lower cholesterol than people in the U.S.
The Weston A Price Foundation has also written many articles on heart health and cholesterol levels including the science behind using coconut oil.
Courtesy of The Nutrition Advisor Blog
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