Our body is well designed to run primarily on fat as a source of energy and when it does, it produces ketones bodies, which is perfectly healthy. Ketones are what the body produces when it’s using fat for energy in the absence of glucose. These ketones are a preferred energy source for the brain and heart.
Of the fats in coconut oil, 92% are healthy saturated fats. This makes it highly stable under heat when cooking and solid at room temperatures.
The main fatty acid content comes from Lauric acid (45-50%). Lauric acid is a medium chain triglyceride (MCT) with a 12 carbon structure (C12:0). These MCTs are digested and assimilated easily in the body and are transferred directly to the liver where they are immediately converted into energy, also meaning they are not directly stored as body fat.
Other MCTs of importance found in coconut oil are:
- Caprylic acid (C8:0);
- Capric acid (C10:0).
Generally speaking, the shorter the fatty acid carbon length (Cx:0), he faster the body can turn the fatty acids into usable energy.
Once mistakenly believed to be unhealthy because of its high saturated fat content, it is now known that the fat in coconut oil is unique and different from almost all other fats and possesses many health giving properties.
Lauric acid is a powerful virus and negative bacteria destroyer, and coconut oil contains the most lauric acid of any substance on Earth! Capric acid, another fatty acid present in smaller amounts, has also been added to the list of coconut’s antimicrobial components.
Coconut oil has been shown to consistently raise HDL cholesterol levels in humans. Higher HDL is linked to a reduced heart disease risk.
Benefits of Coconut Oil
More than 2,000 studies have been performed on coconut oil, demonstrating a wide range of benefits. Here is a list of some of the benefits associated with the consumption of coconut oil:
- Enhance immunity and fight infections;
- Improve your cholesterol numbers;
- Decrease risk of heart disease;
- Promote weight loss;
- Boost metabolism;
- Boost energy levels and enhance athletic/physical performance;
- Assist with blood sugar regulation & prevention/treatment of diabetes;
- Improve digestion;
- Improve brain health;
- Improve skin health;
- Improve hair health; and
- Improve thyroid function.
Using Coconut Oil
Coconut oil can be used both internally and externally. It is an excellent source of energy and when ingested as a food oil or health tonic. It adds both flavour and has therapeutic benefits.
Some of the more popular uses of Coconut Oil:
- Coconut oil is one of your best cooking alternatives as it is so stable that when heated it will not oxidize or go rancid;
- Mix it into smoothies, herbal teas or hot water;
- Mix it into black coffee (instead of milk or other creamers);
- Use it as a skin and hair moisturizer;
- A natural SPF 4 sunscreen;
- Oil pulling (using it as a mouth wash, will help with gum disease and tooth infection); and so much more.