You’ve probably noticed the buzz going on about coconut oil and its supposed health benefits. Well, apparently, they are true!
People have been using it in their kitchen and even beauty routine, and this is no marketing spin! Over a thousand studies have proven how coconut oil can benefit your looks, health, and well-being.
Read on to discover how this miraculous oil can boost your brain power, prevent heart disease, improve your energy, give you healthy hair, improve your digestion, and more!
Also, find out how you can maximize coconut oil in your daily nutrition and lifestyle, so you can enjoy its vast benefits!
Coconut Oil and Its Healthy Fats
The amazing coconut oil benefits have been attributed to its three healthy fatty acids: capric acid, caprylic acid, and lauric acid. These unique fats make up about 62 percent of the oil content of coconut.
Compared with most fats that take longer to digest, these fats known as medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) are rapidly broken down and go straight to the liver.
MCTs also contain calories that can be used by the body as an instant energy source. And since these calories are efficiently converted to energy, they are not readily stored as fat.
Data from the USDA showed that coconut oil is also mostly made up of natural saturated fats that increase the levels of HDL or good cholesterol. Because of this, coconut oil makes a viable option for promoting heart health.
Studies, in fact, provided proof for such a claim. People living in the South Pacific who take coconut as a dietary staple were found to have lower rates of heart disease.
Benefits of Coconut Oil
The impressive health benefits of coconut oil are no rumors. Medical studies reveal that coconut oil benefits your body in various ways. Take a look:
Coconut oil reduces your risk of heart disease
Coconut oil is a great source of natural saturated fats, which do not only enhance the levels of good cholesterol in your body but help convert bad cholesterol into good cholesterol as well.
Having high amounts of HDL or good cholesterol in your body boosts your heart health and significantly prevents your risk of heart disease.
Coconut oil helps protect your liver and treat UTI
The medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) contained in coconut oil have antibacterial properties that fight bacteria and help prevent infection. Because of this, coconut oil has been used to help treat urinary tract infection (UTI).
Research also found that coconut oil has protective effects against liver damage.
A study conducted on laboratory rats showed that the active components of virgin coconut oil (VCO) fought the toxic effects of trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (TMP-SMX), especially in the liver.
Coconut oil boosts memory and brain performance
Coconut oil also has powerful benefits for the brain! Once the liver digests the MCFAs, it produces ketones that can be readily used by the brain for energy.
These ketones provide energy for the brain without the need for insulin to convert glucose into energy.
Coconut oil prevents and treats Alzheimer’s Disease
Due to its beneficial effects on the brain, coconut oil helps to prevent and treat cognitive decline and neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia.
According to a study, the MCFAs found in coconut oil preserve the cognitive function in patients with Alzheimer’s Disease. The study showed that AD patients had an enhanced recall ability after consuming this fatty acid.
Coconut oil reduces inflammation
Virgin coconut oil was also found to possess antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Studies showed that these beneficial properties can assist in treating various diseases such as arthritis.
Another research showed that coconut oil harvested with medium heat worked both as an anti-inflammatory and analgesic.
Coconut oil helps prevent and treat cancer
Coconut oil is also considered anti-cancer food. It helps reduce your risk of cancer through its ketones, whose energy cannot be accessed by tumor cells.
A ketogenic diet, in fact, is believed to weaken cancer cells, helping cancer patients to recover. Several studies found that coconut oil helps improve the condition of cancer patients.
One research discovered that breast cancer patients improved their quality of life from VCO consumption during chemotherapy. VCO also helped alleviate the side effects of the procedure.
A separate study attributed this favorable effect to coconut oil’s lauric acid content. According to the research, lauric acid demonstrates antiproliferative and pro-apoptotic effects in both breast and cancer cells.
Coconut oil boosts the immune system
Lauric acid, the same fatty acid found to prevent cancer cells from spreading, also fights bacteria and viruses, boosting the immune system.
Because of lauric acid’s antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, and antiparasitic properties, the risk of acquiring diseases caused by these harmful agents is decreased.
Experts believe taking one tablespoon of coconut oil three times a day when you’re sick will help you feel better. This, coupled with vegetables and bone broth, is believed to improve your condition.
Coconut oil boosts energy and endurance
Want to give your energy a boost? Take coconut oil! This highly regarded oil also helps to sustain energy and enhance metabolism. Since its MCFAs are directly sent to the liver, they are easily converted into energy.
In fact, triathletes are using coconut oil to improve their endurance and energy during their training and races for long-distance effects.
You can mix coconut oil with raw honey and chia seeds in a tablespoon and consume 30 minutes prior to your physical workout.
Coconut oil promotes weight loss
If you’ve got some serious weight loss goals, you might want to consider adding coconut oil to your diet. Coconut oil doesn’t contain carbohydrates, suppress appetite, and helps trim belly fat!
One research found that long-term consumption of MCTs, which can be found in coconut oil, improved fat oxidation, and calorie burning in obese women.
Coconut oil also decreases your appetite, preventing you from consuming calories you don’t actually need. The MCFAs contained in coconut oil also keep you feeling satiated for longer, triggering an appetite-reducing effect.
Coconut oil can also help you trim belly fat! And several studies actually provide proof for this claim.
One study found that dietary supplementation with coconut oil helped reduce abdominal obesity in women. And not only women can benefit from coconut oil!
Separate research found that coconut oil also helped reduce the waist circumference of male study participants. The same study concluded that coconut oil is safe for human consumption.
Coconut oil enhances digestion and prevents stomach ulcers
Coconut oil also assists the body in absorbing calcium, fat-soluble vitamins, and magnesium, significantly enhancing digestion.
What’s more, coconut oil also promotes gut health by killing bad bacteria and candida, which causes poor digestion and inflammation. With this, the risk of stomach ulcers and ulcerative colitis is decreased.
Coconut oil promotes skin health
This amazing oil is also prized for its skin-boosting effects, making it a great addition to beauty routines! Aside from acting as a natural facial cleanser, moisturizer, and sunscreen, coconut oil also helps to solve several skin woes.
The fatty acids contained in coconut oil, particularly the lauric and caprylic acids, reduce internal inflammation and moisturize the skin from the outside.
Its powerful antioxidant and antimicrobial properties also help to heal the skin faster and balance out fungal sources or candida that can lead to various skin conditions.
Coconut oil keeps your hair healthy
Want to keep your hair luscious and healthy? Add coconut oil to your hair care! VCO is composed of smaller medium-chain fatty acids. Because of this, coconut oil easily and deeply penetrates your hair compared to other conditioners.
Using VCO as a leave-in hair treatment helps in moisturizing your scalp, repairing split ends, and adding a healthy glow to your locks.
Detangling your curly locks can be very challenging. But coconut oil can help you deal with it, too. Because VCO is 100 percent natural, it won’t leave residue on your locks or cause any long-term hair damage.
Coconut oil can also promote thicker, longer hair faster. The coconut oil’s essential fatty acids and vitamins nourish your scalp and help get rid of build-up in your hair follicles.
How to Add Coconut Oil to Your Diet and Lifestyle
Coconut oil is, no doubt, a nutritional powerhouse! And the good news is, you can easily enjoy it in your diets and reap its amazing health perks! Take a look at how you can add coconut oil to your diet and lifestyle:
Use coconut oil for cooking your favorite dishes
You can use one to two tablespoons of coconut oil for sautéing or stir-frying eggs, vegetables or fish dishes.
Add coconut oil to your favorite recipes
If you want a healthier alternative for butter, look no further than coconut oil! You can incorporate it in your favorite recipes as you would butter or add it to your protein shakes.
Perk up your caffeine fix with coconut oil
Combine the powerful benefits of coffee and coconut oil or tea and coconut oil! One or two teaspoons will already do the trick.
Use coconut oil as a makeup remover
Having trouble getting rid of that waterproof mascara? Coconut oil is here to help! Apply enough amount on a cotton pad and use it to remove your makeup. Wash your face with a gentle facial wash to get rid of the remaining oil.
Make your own body scrub
Mix one tablespoon of coconut oil with one tablespoon of ground coffee, and voila – instant body scrub!
Use coconut oil as a hair treatment
Using VCO as a hair treatment is easy to do: After melting the VCO in a bowl, you can gently massage it into your hair. Wrap your hair in a shower cap for 30 minutes and then shampoo your hair to remove the oil.
It’s pretty obvious that coconut oil can benefit your health immensely. So, if you want to savor these health and beauty perks, don’t hesitate to add coconut oil to your diet and lifestyle!
It proves to be a great addition to your daily nutrition and beauty routine. Just remember to pick the organic version, so you can reap its maximum benefits.