Coconut oil is slowly changing it’s own image through scientific and medical studies that are finally bringing cocnut oil out of the shadow of vast misrepresentation. There is widespread misconception that coconut oil is bad for you because it is said to raise blood cholesterol and cause heart disease. The only “proof” is one four-decades old study. The study used hydrogenated coconut oil. It is now known that the process of hydrogenation creates “trans fatty acids” (TFAs), which are toxic entities that enter cell membranes, block utilization of essential fatty acids (EFAs) and impede cell functionality. TFAs also cause a rise in blood cholesterol. These substances are not present in natural coconut oil. In other words, a study based on hydrogenated coconut oil has no relevance to the non-hydrogenated coconut milk or coconut oil that you eat.
Benefits of coconut oil are endless and nearly 50% of the fatty acid in natural coconut oil is lauric acid, which converts to the fatty acid monolaurin in the body. Monolaurin has adverse effects on a variety of microorganisms including bacteria, yeast, fungi, and enveloped viruses. It [monolaurin] destroys the lipid membrane of such enveloped viruses as HIV, measles, Herpes simplex virus (HSV-1), influenza and cytomegalovirus (CMV). The usefulness lauric acid/monolaurin in treating AIDS is currently under investigation. Lauric acid is a main component of human breast milk and helps protect children from illness during infancy. Here are a few more reason coconut oil should be a staple in your home.
From greenmedinfo.com, here a few reasons coconut oil helps us and is something I use everyday in my shakes and on my skin.
Fat-burning: Ironic, isn’t it? A saturated fat which can accelerate the loss of midsection fat (the most dangerous kind). Well, there are now two solid, human studies showing just two tablespoons a day (30 ml), in both men and women, is capable of reducing belly fat within 1-3 months.
Brain-Boosting: A now famous study, published in 2006 in the journal Neurobiology of Aging, showed that the administration of medium chain triglycerides (most plentifully found in coconut oil) in 20 subjects with Alzheimer’s disease or mild cognitive impairment, resulted in significant increases in ketone bodies (within only 90 minutes after treatment) associated with measurable cognitive improvement in those with less severe cognitive dysfunction.[i]
Clearing Head Lice: When combined with anise spray, coconut oil was found to be superior to the insecticide permethrin (.43%).[ii]
Healing Wounds: Coconut has been used for wound healing since time immemorial. Three of the identified mechanisms behind these healing effects are its ability to accelerate re-epithelialization, improve antioxidant enzyme activity, and stimulate higher collagen cross-linking within the tissue being repaired.[iii] Coconut oil has even been shown to work synergistically with traditional treatments, such as silver sulphadizine, to speed burn wound recovery.[iv]
NSAID Alternative: Coconut oil has been demonstrated to have anti-inflammatory, analgesic and fever-reducing properties.[v]
Anti-Ulcer Activity: Interestingly, coconut milk (which includes coconut oil components), has been shown to be as effective as the conventional drug sucralfate as an NSAID-associated anti-ulcer agent.[vi]
Anti-Fungal: In 2004, 52 isolates of Candida species were exposed to coconut oil. The most notorious form, Candida albicans, was found to have the highest susceptibility. Researchers remarked: “Coconut oil should be used in the treatment of fungal infections in view of emerging drug-resistant Candida species.”[vii]
Testosterone-Booster: Coconut oil was found to reduce oxidative stress in the testes of rats, resulting in significantly higher levels of testosterone.[viii]
Reducing Swollen Prostate: Coconut oil has been found to reduce testosterone-induced benign prostate growth in rats.[ix]
Improving Blood Lipids: Coconut oil consistently improves the LDL:HDL ratio in the blood of those who consume it. Given this effect, coconut oil can no longer be dismissed for being ‘that saturated fat which clogs the arteries.’
Fat-Soluble Nutrient Absorption: Coconut oil was recently found to be superior to safflower oil in enhancing tomato carotenoid absorption.[x]
Bone Health: Coconut oil has been shown to reduce oxidative stress within the bone, which may prevent structural damage in osteoporotic bone.[xi] [Note: Osteoporosis is a Myth, as presently defined by the T-Score]
Sunscreen: Coconut oil has been shown to block out UV rays by 30%. Keep in mind that this is good, insofar as UVA rays are damaging to the skin, whereas UVB rays are highly beneficial (when exposure is moderate).[i] Make sure to check this list of other sun-blocking oils.