Kaira Coconut Oil
Posted On: 30/09/2023
Due to its high levels of saturated fat, numerous health authorities recommend limiting its consumption as a food.
Possible benefits of coconut oil include increasing good cholesterol, controlling blood sugar, reducing stress, and more. However, more research into the effects of regular coconut oil use is necessary.
Coconut oil contains over 80% Trusted Source saturated fat. Some expertsTrusted Source have linked saturated fats with cardiovascular and other diseases.
1.Increasing good cholesterol
There are two types of cholesterol: high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or good cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or bad cholesterol. HDL appears to help reduce levels of LDL, and high levels of HDL may help boost cardiovascular health.
Some researchersTrusted Source have argued that medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), a component in coconut oil, may help boost levels of good cholesterol. Participants took 1 tablespoon of coconut oil twice daily for 8 weeks.
However, resultsTrusted Source have varied. One small study in 2004 found the opposite. In research, dietary MCT increased bad cholesterol in 17 healthy young men. The scientists did not study any other indicators of heart health.
A 2016 studyTrusted Source found no clear evidence that coconut oil either benefits or harms cholesterol levels.
However, findingsTrusted Source published in 2018 suggested that extra virgin coconut oil’s impact on cholesterol may be similar to that of olive oil. So far, the results remain inconclusive, and more studies are needed.
2.Controlling blood sugar
Findings from a 2009 animal study suggested that MCTs, present in coconut oil, may help preserve insulin sensitivity. The review also listed the specific beneficial health effects of MCT oil, not coconut oil, in 29 studies.
However, other investigations have not foundTrusted Source the same results. This study on mini pigs, however, looked at an excess calorie, high fat diet that also included hydrogenated fats and high fructose.
Virgin coconut oil may have antioxidant properties. In a rodent studyTrusted Source, it appeared to reduce stress resulting from exercise and chronic cold. Researchers believe that virgin coconut oil could be useful in treating some kinds of depression.
Some people apply coconut oil to their hair to increase shine and protect it from damage. It may penetrate the scalp better than mineral oils.
However, one studyTrusted Source of people with similar hair types found no difference in hair condition between those who used coconut oil and those who did not.
Applying a coconut extract to human skin may enhance its protective barrier functions and have an anti-inflammatory effect, says a 2017 studyTrusted Source.
These findings could have implications for medicine but not for the diet.
6.Preventing liver disease
In a 2017 studyTrusted Source, rats with liver disease consumed a high glucose diet either with or without coconut oil. Those who consumed coconut oil had better measures of liver health after 4 weeks than those who did not.
This suggests that some elements in coconut oil may help protect the liver.
7.Reducing asthma symptoms
Inhaling coconut oil has helped reduceTrusted Source asthma symptoms in rabbits.
However, no studies have taken place in humans, so people should not inhale coconut oil.
Some people have argued that coconut oil leaves people feeling fuller after eating, which means they will not eat so much.
However, one studyTrusted Source compared MCT oil to coconut oil and confirmed that MCT oil exerts effects on satiety, not coconut oil.
A 2017 reviewTrusted Source discusses the importance of oil pulling for dental health. Oil pulling is a traditional oral treatment. It involves swishing an oil around the oral cavity, in a similar way to the modern mouthwash.
Studies have found coconut oil pulling to protect against cavities, improve gingivitis, and influence the oral bacterial balance.
A studyTrusted Source comparing two products found that coconut oil was less likely to trigger diabetes and weight gain in mice. Some have interpreted this as meaning coconut oil can help people lose weight.
One reason weight gain occurs is when people consume more calories than they use for energy.
All high fat foods and oils are high in calories. One tablespoon of coconut oil, weighing 13.6 grams (g) contains 121 caloriesTrusted Source, which is more than lard and butter and slightly less than sunflower oil.
Adding more high fat, calorie dense foods to a diet that contains carbohydrates and plenty of calories may not result in weight loss.
Nutrition1 tbs of coconut oil containsTrusted Source:
- 121 calories
- 0 g of protein
- 13.5 g of fat, of which 11.2 g is saturated
- 0 milligrams (mg) of cholesterol
Coconut oil contains vitamin E, but no fiber and little to no other vitamins or minerals.
Coconut oil is almost 100% fat, most of which is saturated fat. However, the structure of fat in coconut oil differs from that of many animal products, which mainly consist of long-chain fatty acids.
Coconut oil is high in MCTs. These are harder for the body to convert into stored fat and easier to burn off than long-chain triglycerides (LCTs). Supporters of coconut oil attribute many of its benefits to the high MCT content.