Benefits of Coconut Oil
Benefits Of Coconut Oil: One Super Oil
Coconut oil is one super oil! I cook with it, occasionally drink a tablespoon or two in the morning, oil pull with it to strengthen and clean my gums, treat cuts with it, and more. The benefits of coconut oil are astounding. Coconut oil has been used to aid proper digestion, lose weight, increase immunity, for hair care, skin care, dental care, to maintain cholesterol levels, and to reduce blood pressure.
Benefits Of Coconut Oil: Lauric Acid And The Immune System
Coconut oil is made up of nearly fifty percent lauric acid, a fatty acid not found abundantly in nature but found in abundantly in mother’s breast milk. This fatty acid is an antiviral and helps to protect developing infants from disease and infection.
The body converts lauric acid into monolaurin, and monolaurin attacks the lipid and phospholipid coating of lipid coated viruses and bacteria. Some types of lipid coated viruses and bacteria are HIV, herpes, influenza, heliobacter pylori, listeria, and streptococcus agalactiae.
Coconut oil’s other active ingredients that are responsible for much of its benefits are, capric acid, and cprylic acid, which also gives coconut oil its antibacterial, anti-fungul, antimicrobial, and antiviral properties.
Benefits Of Coconut Oil: Weight Loss
The body first uses carbohydrates for energy and then it uses fat for energy. In western diets much of the fat we consume are vegetable oils used to cook foods, and they are comprised of long chain fatty acids (LCFAs), also known as long-chain triglycerides or LCTs and take longer to burn and often go unused since carbohydrates are used first. At night the unused fats are stored in the body and contribute to weight gain.
Coconut oil consists of 90% saturated fats and most of these fats are medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs), also called medium-chain triglycerides or MCTs, which also contribute to the benefits of coconut oil. These medium-chain triglycerides are smaller than the long-chain triglycerides and are more easily digested and are burned quickly, reducing the chances that they will go unused and be stored in the body. Consuming coconut oil rather than other vegetable oils will give your body a better chance burn excess fat.
Though coconut oil is made up of saturated fats but these are not the same bad saturated fats found in hydrogenated oils the have been found to compromise healthy living. All saturated fats were given a bad rap because at the time hydrogenated oils were heavily used heart disease went up, and the oil industry began to denounce saturated fats and moved to the use of polyunsaturated fats. Researchers have reanalyzed realize that saturated fats fats are actually beneficial.
Coconut oil’s medium-chain triglycerides are easily digested and are quickly metabolized by the liver to produce energy, in comparison to long-chain triglycerides vegetable oils like corn oil, safflower oil, and canola oil. Coconut oil’s medium-chain triglycerides boosts your metabolism and increases your energy.
Benefits Of Coconut Oil: Reduced Cholesterol
Coconut oil has been shown in tests to increase HDL (good) levels and lower LDL/ HDL ratio, which is good. In many cases the total cholesterol levels are lowered while eating coconut oil, and in some cases total cholesterol levels did increase and this is not necessarily a bad thing. The LDL levels increased in those cases which lowered the cholesterol ratio. There is growing consensus that cholesterol ratio should be used to determine good cholesterol levels and not total cholesterol levels.
Benefits Of Coconut Oil: Skin Care
The benefits of coconut oil make it an excellent nourisher and moisturizer for the skin. Coconut oil’s fatty acids help to strengthen underlying tissues and help remove excessive dead cells on the skin’s surface. Coconut oil’s antibacterial, anti-fungul, antimicrobial, and antiviral properties help heal and protect against including diseases like psoriasis, dermatitis, and eczema.
Benefits Of Coconut Oil: Hair Care
Coconut oil’s deeply penetrating oils moisturize and and protection to the scalp. Its antibacterial, anti-fungul, antimicrobial, and antiviral properties help protect the, while its fatty acids provides nutrients to the scalp’s skin cells to condition and strengthen them. This helps to provide are stronger foundation for hair and hair growth and the coconut oil add long lasting moisture to the hair, which helps with manageability.
How To Take Coconut Oil?
It is best to use organic food grade coconut oil, whether you are using it on your skin, hair, or cooking or drinking it. Whatever you put on your skin or hair, you should be able to put in your mouth. When using non food grade coconut oil, the chemicals that are added to it pass through your skin and into your body, which can compromise your immune system.
When you are cooking there are two forms of coconut oil we need to be concerned with, unrefined coconut oil and refined coconut oil. The unrefined coconut oil should be expeller pressed, which means the oil has been removed from the meat through a mechanical pressing process, and not through the use of harmful solvent chemicals.
This oil is good to use on salads, to drink, and to cook and low to medium heat. It does not stand up well to cooking with high heat and so it is better to use refined coconut oil when cooking with high heat.
Unrefined coconut oil doesn’t stand up well to cooking under high heat because it has a lower smoking point than refined coconut oil, and it produces toxins when heated above its smoking point. Refined coconut oil is better suited for hight heat cooking, but since it is refined you may not want to cook with refined coconut oil and may want to use another oil.
As you can see, the benefits of coconut oil are numerous and it works well with a plant based diet.