Coconut oil – description of the oil. Health benefits and harms



Coconut oil is widely popular all over the world not only as a culinary ingredient, but also as a very useful and effective cosmetic product.

The controversy over coconut oil continues. Those who are accustomed to cooking food on it – frying cheese pancakes, for example – cannot believe that their idol has been overthrown from the pedestal. And they stubbornly continue to use it in cooking.

Coconut oil – description of the oil. Health benefits and harms

Unfortunately, once hailed as a superfood, this product is now equated with poison in terms of the degree of harm to the body. What went wrong with coconut oil and where is it really true?

Coconut oil can be safely called a versatile product, and below we will look at ways to use it in everyday life.

Pure poison. This is how Harvard professor Dr. Karin Michels identified coconut oil in her lecture with the rather bright title Coconut Oil and Other Nutritional Errors, which made headlines and received millions of views on YouTube. Yes, coconut oil – a “superfood”, declared the Holy Grail of health, beauty and well-being, has fallen from heaven to earth, having lost the favor of consumers.

Coconut oil composition

Coconut oil – description of the oil. Health benefits and harms

Coconut oil contains short- and medium-chain triglycerides. They go directly to the liver, where they are burned and converted into energy necessary for the normal functioning of the body.

Medium- and short-chain triglycerides can be compared to a metabolic igniter as they speed up the burning of calories, thereby promoting weight loss. It is also believed that they lower cholesterol levels.

How is coconut oil made?

The raw material for the production of coconut oil is copra or freshly dried coconut pulp. Most often, oil is produced by hot pressing.

Attention! The most valuable and useful oil is obtained when cold pressing of dried copra is used for its production. However, with this manufacturing method, only 10% of the oil contained in it can be extracted from the raw materials.

Antimicrobial properties of oil

Coconut oil contains lauric and capric acids, which have antibacterial, antiviral properties. In the human body, they are converted to monolaurin and monocarpine.

These substances contribute to the destruction of many viruses, bacteria and parasites, as they dissolve their protective shell, consisting of lipids. Attention! Monolaurin deprives bacteria of their ability to target the healthy cells in the body that they seek to infect.

And lauric acid prevents the maturation of viral cells. Coconut oil has been shown to reduce viral load in people with AIDS and to kill various fungi.

Coconut Oil & Slimming

Coconut oil – description of the oil. Health benefits and harms

As already mentioned, the substances contained in coconut oil contribute to weight loss, as they speed up the metabolism. Medium chain fats are easily digestible. If the amount of calories entered into the body does not exceed its energy needs, then the use of coconut oil leads to a more intense burning of them.

Harm of coconut oil

There are very few contraindications for consuming coconut oil. It should be discarded in case of individual intolerance to this product. In addition, it is not recommended to consume more than three tablespoons of coconut oil.

27 benefits of coconut oil

Protects skin from UV radiation

A layer of coconut oil applied to the skin creates protection from solar radiation and ultraviolet radiation, which causes cancer, wrinkles become more frequent and dark spots appear on the skin.

According to research, coconut oil can block up to 20 percent of the ultraviolet radiation that comes from the sun’s rays. But keep in mind that its protection does not equate to sunscreen, which can block up to 90 percent of UV radiation.

Another study found that the SPF level in coconut oil is 7, which is less than the acceptable minimum recommendation.

Coconut oil – description of the oil. Health benefits and harms

Coconut oil Boosts metabolism

The substance contains triglycerides with medium-length chains, and they are quickly absorbed, thereby helping to increase the amount of calories burned.

Studies have been conducted and it has been found that MCTs activate metabolism, albeit for a short time. Consuming 30 grams of MCT increases calorie burn by 120 units per day.

Safe cooking at high temperatures

Coconut oil is very rich in saturated fat, making it one of the best for frying. Under thermal exposure, fats retain their structure, which vegetable oils enriched with polyunsaturated fatty acids cannot boast of.

For example, safflower and corn oils are converted to toxins at high temperatures, thereby harming our health.

Coconut oil is considered a very effective and safe alternative to traditional cooking oils.

Improves dental health

This substance actively fights bacteria, including Streptococcus mutans – microorganisms of the oral cavity that destroy enamel and the teeth themselves, and inflame the gums.

Scientists conducted an experiment when it was meant to rinse the mouth with coconut oil for 10 minutes. As a result, the number of harmful microbes has significantly decreased, which is equivalent to the effect of an antiseptic rinse.

Another study found that coconut oil was used every day to reduce inflammation and plaque in adolescents with gum disease.

Coconut oil Relieves skin irritation and eliminates eczema

This oil is very good for dermatitis and skin lesions. A study was conducted among children with eczema and 47 percent of those who consumed coconut oil experienced improvements in their skin.

Coconut oil – description of the oil. Health benefits and harms
Coconut Oil (selective focus) on an old wooden table (close-up shot)

The liver breaks down MCT triglycerides, converting them into ketones, which serve as an additional source of energy for brain work.

Several experiments have shown that MCTs have a beneficial effect on brain lesions, including epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease. Scientists recommend taking coconut oil to stimulate ketone production in the body.

A useful ingredient for making mayonnaise

Industrial mayonnaise contains soybean oil and sugar. At home, you can independently prepare this sauce based on olive or coconut oils, excluding harmful components.

Moisturizes the skin

Coconut oil is considered to be an excellent moisturizer for hand skin, especially in the elbow area. You can try applying it on your face, but you should not do this if you have very oily skin.

By applying oil to the heel area, you will get rid of cracks and restore skin softness. It is advisable to apply a thin layer of the substance on the feet and wear socks on top of it every day before going to bed. Doing this regularly will keep your heels smooth and soft.

Coconut oil Fights infections

Fresh coconut oil has antibacterial properties that help fight infectious diseases.

A test-tube study has shown that the product stops the development of the bacteria Clostridium difficile, which causes very severe diarrhea. It also fights yeast well with lauric acid, which is the main constituent of the fats in coconut oil.

There is no official evidence that coconut oil can help fight infections when consumed.

Increases good HDL cholesterol

Scientifically proven positive effect of coconut oil on cholesterol levels, increasing the amount of a beneficial trace element.

A study was conducted on a group of women with abdominal obesity and the results were such that the coconut oil category was marked by an increase in HDL.

Coconut oil – description of the oil. Health benefits and harms

Helps Burn Belly Fat

Coconut oil helps to reduce the amount of visceral fat in the abdomen, which negatively affects the human body and causes diseases of the cardiovascular system and type 2 diabetes.

In the study, men who consumed up to 30 ml of coconut oil per day were able to get rid of fat in the waist area, thereby reducing the girth of this zone by 3 centimeters. Similar results were observed among women who combined a diet with coconut oil.

Provides hair protection

Regular use of coconut oil can also improve hair condition. According to a study by scientists, applying this vegetable oil before and after washing hair significantly reduced protein loss and increased hair strength. Based on this experiment, experts concluded that the lauric acid contained in coconut oil is capable of penetrating the hair structure and protecting it from damage.

Coconut oil Reduces hunger

Triglycerides in coconut oil can help to suppress hunger, thereby reducing your calorie intake. In one study, researchers found that a diet high in triglycerides was associated with more effective weight loss than moderate and low intake of the same micronutrients.

Accelerates tissue regeneration

Coconut oil – description of the oil. Health benefits and harms

In one experiment, scientists found that applying coconut oil to minor cuts and shallow wounds can help reduce inflammation and produce additional collagen, which is one of the main elements of the skin. Due to these processes, the rate of tissue regeneration increased several times.

Therefore, to accelerate skin recovery for minor cuts, apply a few grams of coconut oil to damaged skin.

Strengthens bones

Scientists conducted a study in the process of which they found that the antioxidants contained in coconut oil are able to protect bone tissue from the negative effects of free radicals. Thus, in rats in the diet of which this ingredient was added, the strength of the skeleton was significantly higher than in ordinary rats.

Repels insects

Applying some essential oils to the skin surface provides protection against insect bites. However, in most cases, these oils are used in combination with a natural base. So, the combination with coconut oil provides 98 percent protection against mosquito bites.

Prevents the development of Candida fungi

Fungal diseases are often associated with the development of Candida fungi, which in most cases develop in warm and humid areas. Most often, this type of fungus appears in the vagina and mouth.

Experts have found that coconut oil inhibits the growth of this type of fungus. In addition, they stated that this type of natural oil is no less effective than fluconazole prescribed for thrush.

Coconut oil Eliminates stains

Coconut oil, combined with 1 to 1 baking soda, can be used as a cleaner to remove stains from fabrics and carpets. To do this, this mixture must be applied to the dirt and wiped off after 5 minutes.

Eliminates inflammation

Coconut oil – description of the oil. Health benefits and harms

An experiment carried out on animals revealed that the use of coconut oil as a dietary supplement helps to eliminate inflammation.

At the same time, the use of coconut oil in food by a person can reduce the level of oxidative stress and internal inflammatory processes. Other oils are unable to do this. However, additional research is required to confirm this claim.

Can be used as a deodorant

Despite the fact that sweat as an independent substance is odorless, bacteria located on human skin can produce an unpleasant odor. Due to its antibacterial properties, coconut oil is considered one of the best natural substances that can be used as a deodorant.

It is important to note that most natural deodorants are made with this oil.

Fills the body with energy

One of the constituents of coconut oil is triglycerides, which are converted into energy when they enter the liver. It is important to note that coconut oil is one of the few energy drinks that does not raise blood sugar levels.

Coconut oil Heals damaged cuticles

Coconut oil can be used to help heal damaged cuticles as well as prevent burrs. To do this, several times a week, it is necessary to apply this substance to the surface of the skin in the problem area and rub in with slow circular movements for several minutes.

Eases unpleasant symptoms of arthritis

Inflammatory processes in the joints lead to reduced mobility, pain and the development of a disease such as arthritis. Scientists have found that the polyphenols in coconut oil can help reduce pain and relieve arthritis symptoms by eliminating inflammation.

Renews furniture

Coconut oil will give your furniture a new look and a shiny finish. In addition, applying coconut oil will enhance the texture of wood surfaces.

It should also be noted that this type of oil prevents dust from settling on the surface and has a pleasant smell, unlike many modern polishing agents.

Coconut oil – description of the oil. Health benefits and harms
Fresh coconut oil in glassware and wooden spoon on color wooden table background

Can be used to remove makeup

Coconut oil is considered one of the best makeup removers because it is hypoallergenic, has a pleasant scent and is delicate. To remove makeup, apply a little oil on a cotton pad and wipe the skin surface until the makeup is completely removed.

Coconut oil Provides liver protection

Animal studies have shown that the unsaturated fat in coconut oil protects the liver from toxins and the negative effects of alcoholic beverages. Thus, the consumption of this oil has demonstrated the release of more beneficial enzymes and a decrease in inflammatory processes in the liver with alcohol consumption.

Can be used as lip balm

Coconut oil can protect lips from frost, UV radiation, and a number of other negative factors. In addition, it is this oil that is capable of providing lips with moisture for several hours.

Applicable in salads

Coconut oil is one of the best ingredients in homemade salad as it contains no preservatives or sugar.

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