Thumbs up For Coconut Oil
We are told that coconut oil is good for us. The question is why it is so beneficial?
Coconut oil has been used as both a food and a medicine for centuries in many cultures throughout the world. True virgin coconut oil is made from fresh coconuts, is a pure white when the oil is solidified or crystal clear like water when liquefied and has a distinct coconut flavour and aroma.
Coconut oil has been classified as a “super-food”. It's a unique combination of medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) is beneficial to our health, enhancing brain function, promoting fat loss, used in chronic fatigue, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, Crohn’s, IBS, to lower cholesterol and can be applied to the skin or hair to act as a moisturiser or for psoriasis
Why you should include coconut oil in your diet
- The MCFAs in coconut oil are digested and metabolised differently from those of other fats. MCFAs do not require pancreatic enzymes or bile for digestion. They are easy to digest, making them ideal for infants, cystic fibrosis patients, and those who have digestive problems including those with gallbladder problems or have had their gallbladders removed.
- Coconut oil improves calcium and Magnesium absorption thereby supporting the development of strong bones and teeth, and protecting against osteoporosis.
- Coconut oil improves digestion, bowel function and the absorption of nutrients including B Vitamins, fat-soluble Vitamins A, D, E, K as well as amino-acids.
- Coconut oil stimulates metabolism, increases energy, reduces appetite and improves thyroid function, all of which aid in reducing unwanted body fat (especially that which is found around the stomach) as well as enhancing physical and athletic performance, and helps to relieve symptoms associated with chronic fatigue syndrome.
- Coconut oil is heart-healthy, has no detrimental effect on blood cholesterol, does not promote platelet stickiness that leads to blood clot formation, and does not collect in the arteries.
- Coconut oil protects against insulin resistance, thus reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes. MCFAs are small enough to be absorbed into the cells where they are transformed into energy reducing the amount of fat we pack into storage and improving insulin sensitivity.
- Coconut oil possesses anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and ant-oxidant properties, all of which protect arteries from atherosclerosis and heart disease, also reduces symptoms associated with psoriasis, eczema and dermatitis as well as relieving pain and irritation caused by haemorrhoids and help to control dandruff.
- MCFAs possess powerful anti-microbial properties that kill a variety of disease-causing bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites, yet they do not harm friendly gut bacteria.
- Coconut oil functions as a protective antioxidant, helping to protect the body from harmful free radicals that promote premature ageing and degenerative disease.
- Applied topically coconut oil helps to form a chemical barrier on the skin to ward off infection, supporting the natural chemical balance of the skin, softening and helping to relieve dryness and flaking and preventing wrinkles, sagging skin and age spots.
- The MCFAs in coconut oil increases the blood concentration of ketone bodies which assist in the reduction of seizures in epileptic children who are unable to take anti-epileptic drugs.
- MCFAs are useful in Alzheimer’s disease where the fundamental problem is the inability of the brain to effectively utilize glucose to produce energy. This defect in energy utilization starves the brain cells and weakens their ability to withstand stress, resulting in the brain rapidly ageing and degenerating into dementia. The brain requires a continual source of energy to maintain function, even during sleep. When blood glucose levels fall, the brain needs another supply of energy to function and to survive. This alternative fuel source comes in the form of ketones. When coconut oil is consumed a portion of the MCFAs are converted into ketones regardless of what other foods are being eaten and it is these ketones that they can supply the brain with a continual source of energy. Taking as little as 1 to 2 tablespoons (15 - 30ml) of coconut can raise blood ketone levels to the required levels for the brain as a source of energy. Since these ketones are used up to produce energy, this needs to be repeated three times a day to maintain elevated ketone levels. Alzheimer’s is not just a concern for the elderly. We are all at risk. Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease and begins decades before the first symptoms. You can stop Alzheimer’s disease before it has a chance of taking over your life. Adding coconut oil into your daily life may help to provide that protection.
The exact amount of coconut oil in the diet needed to gain optimal benefits varies from person to person. However, on the basis of the amount of MCFAs found in breast milk, which is known to be effective in its role of protecting and nourishing infants, it is estimated that the amount suitable for adults to be 3 ½ tablespoons (50g) per day to equal the proportion of MCFAs a nursing baby receives. This can be achieved by adding to your diet by way of using coconut oil in cooking, adding to hot beverages or smoothies, as well as supplementing with coconut capsules.
Coconut has a strong detoxifying effect as it stimulates the immune system causing the body to clean out stored toxins and germs. It is therefore advisable that if you have not included coconut in your diet before slowly introduce it until you reach the desired daily quota.
Coconut oil aids the body to heal itself however if you do not consume adequate amounts of vitamins, minerals and protein in your diet your body won’t be capable of healing regardless of how much coconut oil you use.
It is time to give coconut oil the thumbs up as the health benefits are so extensive!