When I was encouraged to eat, yes EAT spoonfuls of raw organic coconut oil for its anti-fungal, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory and weight loss properties, I was determined to try it and find out what the hype was all about. It also got me curious to learn more about coconut oil. My friend recommended I start with reading The Coconut Oil Miracle by Dr. Bruce Fife.
“I found benefit, after benefit, after benefit.” –Bruce Fife. He found that one third of the world's population depended on coconuts to some degree for their food.
It is a staple in the diets of Asian and Pacific populations and is classified as a ‘functional food’ because o the many health benefits and use in traditional medicine.
Even though coconut oil has been quite popular around the world, its consumption among Western countries is controversial. Why the Coconut Oil Controversy? The fat found in coconut oil is a Saturated fat.
Even though we have been told to stay away from saturated fats telling us they are bad for us and have negative consequence, we will questions this. There are different types of Saturated fat and guess what? Not all Saturated fats were created equal.
All the fats and oils in our diets are composed of fat molecules known as fatty acids. Fatty acids can be divided into three basic categories depending on their size and the length of their carbon chain.
There are long-chain fatty acids (LCFA’s) such as the ones found in meat and vegetables that make up 98% of our diets; medium chain fatty acids (MCFA’s) found in dairy, and short-chain fatty acids (SCFA) like the ones in wheat and soybeans.
What makes coconut oil unique is that it is predominantly composed of naturally occurring medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA’s), which our bodies process and respond to positively.
Unlike artificial saturated fats or hydrogenated fats that clog arteries, cause heart disease and are linked to obesity, the MCFA’s in coconut oil go straight to the liver to be metabolized and are used as a form of energy. Almost 50% of the fat in coconut oil is made of lauric acid.
Lauric acid is found in mother’s milk and is considered a miracle ingredient. The body converts lauric acid to monolaurin, which has anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal properties to name a few. 10 Health Benefits That Can Transform Your Body: Coconut oil when consumed regularly gives our bodies amazing benefits that enhance our health and appearance. Promotes Weight Loss: As mentioned above, coconut oil’s medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) travels directly to the liver to be burned for energy and not stored as fat. A 2009 study found that women who consumed 2 tablespoons of coconut oil daily for 12 weeks had significantly less abdominal fat by the end of the study.
Lowers cholesterol: Coconut oil is abundant in lauric acid, a component proven increases the good HDL cholesterol in the blood improving the cholesterol ratio levels. Additionally, substituting your regular oil with coconut oil, eliminates additional cholesterol promoting elements from your daily diet without compromising the taste. Protects against heart disease. Oxidation is considered a major contributor to cardiovascular problems and skin aging. Coconut oil has an antioxidant effect on the body, which means it helps it counteract the damage to other healthy fats and tissues in our body.
Provide potent anti-cancer properties: The MCFAs component of coconut oil has antimicrobial properties so it effectively prevents the spread of cancer cells.
Along with its antioxidant effect that prevents the formation of harmful free radicals it enhances the immune system.
Source Help balance blood sugar levels and stop cravings: Coconut oil improves how the body uses insulin, which in turn regulates blood sugar. When blood sugar levels are balanced throughout the day it eliminates the physical response for cravings.
Provide a quick and easy source of nutrition (full of Vitamin B and potassium). Protect from infectious diseases causing bacteria, virus, and fungi: The MCFA’s in coconut oil including Lauric acid, Caprylic acid, and others provide antimicrobial effect by disrupting bacterial, fungal, and viral cell membranes, leading to cell death.
Source Help clear eczema: The MCFA’s contained in coconut oil, its anti-inflammatory properties and its moisturizing effect on the skin support the healing and repair of the skin and immune system.
Regular use has been documented to treat eczema. Source Give skin and hair a youthful, healthy, fresh look: Coconut oil is a wonderful moisturizer for skin and hair. It has protective properties due to its vitamin E content and ability to reduce the absorption of toxins and pesticides through your skin makes.
Cures Dandruff: Dandruff is a type of fungus and since coconut oil is rich in anti-fungal properties it effectively reduces dandruff. HowTo Use It QUALITY: Choose an organic, unrefined, USDA certified, coconut oil that is stored in a dark container to guarantee freshness.
A personal favourite of mine is Divine Coconut DOSAGE: To get the health benefits of coconut oil, you need to take between 1-3 tablespoons a day. Start with ½ a teaspoon to see how you tolerate it and work up the dosage. You may experience an initial ‘die-off’ effect in form of flu-like symptoms or nausea when your body starts releasing toxins to the blood stream.
The symptoms disappear in a matter of days. OIL PULLING: is an ancient method of cleaning your mouth from bacteria by swishing around a tablespoon of coconut oil in your mouth for twenty minutes daily in the morning and at night. Oil pulling helps detox your system and mineralize your teeth.
Note: once you are done, make sure to spit the residue in the trash to prevent clogging your sink or toilet. COOKING: Coconut oil maintains its chemical structure when heated making it the ideal choice for cooking and baking. I recommend you try this mouth watering chocolate vegan dessert Raw-Chocolate-Energy-Balls. SMOOTHIE: For added nutrients, richness and texture, add coconut oil to your favorite smoothie. I’ve prepared my favorite energy boosting smoothie recipe for you to download here Morning-Energy-Blast-Smoothie-with-Coconut-Oil. Coconut oil has become a staple in our household.
Everyone loves it, young and old. We use it for pretty much everything. I recommend that whenever you want to oil up to do it with coconut oil. Note: when you increase your intake of good fats, you feel full and have the energy to decrease your intake of processed foods made of white flour and white sugar like cookies, breads, and pasta which are not nourishing to the body.
By doing that, you clean up your diet and adjust your weight. A few times a year, Yasmine, Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, runs programs based on incorporating healthier cleaner foods and ways of living into your day to day. You leave feel energetic and vibrant from the inside out - and adjust your weight in the process.
This is a great option for you if you want to clean up your diet by work through a structured program with the support of a knowledgeable advisor. The next “Eat to Slim Down & Energize” 6-Week Program starts this coming February 13th! Get the details and sign up here! and book your free 15-minute health chat with Yasmine here.
This article was published in Kouhl magazine on March 31st, 2015 Under the name: “10 Ways Coconut Oil Can Change Your Body” http://www.kouhl.com/10-ways-coconut-oil-can-change-your-body/