A little jar of Coconut oil
Health

Top 15 coconut oil’s health benefits

20 years ago, I read in a magazine that coconut oil was bad for you because it is high in calories and full of the bad ‘LDL’ cholesterol. I was so disappointed because it is some of my favorite food!!! So I avoided consuming it. Then about 5 years ago, new scientific studies reversed the tendency by finding out that coconut oil has incredible beneficial health properties. I was so excited about the news, that the next day I bought some extra-virgin unrefined organic coconut oil. It’s become a part of my daily habits to use it. Here are some top 15 health benefits of coconut oil but the list can go on!

What is coconut oil?

Coconut is a tropical fruit. It is cholesterol-free, low in sodium and full of plant-base proteins.

Coconut oil is extracted from the white meat inside of coconuts. 60% of coconut oil is composed of 3 fatty acids: Caprylic acid, Lauric acid and Capric acid. (MCFA’s, medium-chain fatty acids)

90% of coconut oil calories come from saturated fats. Much higher than olive oil and even butter. However, MCFA’s which are quickly treated by the liver, are turned into energy and not fat.

The fatty acids and proteins are abundant in antioxidants that are beneficial to your wellness.

1 tablespoon of coconut oil nutrition facts

  • 120 calories
  • 0 grams of protein
  • 14 grams of fat (12 = saturated fat; 1 = monounsaturated fat; and 0.5 grams of polyunsaturated fats.)
  • 0 milligrams (mg) of cholesterol

Not all coconut oils are healthy. It is the case of partially hydrogenated coconut oil that is a processed oil that has trans fats and is extracted using chemicals. Unlike unrefined virgin coconut oils.

Incredible health benefits

Coconut oil health benefits

  • Boost up your metabolism!

Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) are fatty acids that speed up your metabolism, increasing the number of calories burnt and are rapidly absorbed and converted into energy by the liver. The capric acid found in coconut oil boots thyroid efficiency and helps burning fat.

  • Reduce your appetite, lose belly fat thus weight!

Eating coconut oil makes you feel fuller. Some studies show that eating MCTs at breakfast reduce the consumption of calories at lunch. As a fat suppressant, it is obvious that it helps lose weight and cut off belly fat that sticks around organs, especially the abdomen. This visceral most dangerous fat increases the risk to have heart disease and diabetes type 2. Studies show that eating 2 tablespoons per day reduce the waist size.

  • Increase your good cholesterol!

Coconut oil’s natural saturated fats’ powerful effect is the turning the HDL bad cholesterol into the HDL good cholesterol.

These fats help control and lower blood sugar levels, thus battling insulin resistance, responsible for contracting diabetes 2.

  • Protect your liver!

Studies on mice show that coconut oil protects the liver from inflammations and damages due to alcohol and toxic compounds. It also has boosted up the activity of beneficial liver enzymes.

It has decreased the accumulation of fat in the liver, preventing diseases such as hepatosteatosis. It has also helped cure urinary tract infections.

  •  Reduce stress!

Its antioxidant properties are effective antidepressants and good to reduce stress.

  • Fight poor digestion!

When taking with vitamins and magnesium, it helps absorb them more efficiently. It also prevents stomach ulcers and inflammation by eliminating toxic bacteria.

  • Mend your brain function!

The medium-chain triglycerides in coconut oil reduce the symptoms of brain disorder such as Alzheimer and epilepsy. Turned into ketones by the liver, they supply an alternative energy source to the dysfunctional brain cells of Alzheimer’s patients.

  • Treat infections!

The lauric acid found in coconut oil stops the growth and kills bacteria, fungi and viruses. Its antibacterial characteristics can help treat yeast infection and diarrhea.

  • Strengthen your bones!

Polyphenols, antioxidants found in coconut oil help strengthen bone structure and increase bone volume.

Rich in omega 3s, they also relieve the inflammation of the joints caused by Arthritis, reducing the swelling.

  • Protect your hair from breaking!

The lauric acid making up 50% of the fatty acids found in coconut oil, penetrates better the hair shaft and substantially reduces protein loss from shampooing. It nourishes your hair, making it look healthier and shinier, protecting it from damage.

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  •  Moisturize your skin!

Coconut is a popular ingredient found in cosmetics to not only improve the appearance of hair but also skin. I use it as a body lotion, hair mask… I treat my cracked heels by simply applying coconut oil and sleep with socks on.

  • Heal your wounds!

Coconut oil increases the production collagen, a protein component of skin. It effectively speeds up the healing of wounds, cuts and its antioxidant properties reduce the inflammation of the skin tissues.

  • Protect your skin from the sun!

Coconut oil prevents sunburn by blocking about 20% of the sun’s ultraviolet rays, an SPF of 7. It is much lower than the recommended sunscreens which block 90% of UVs. But still, it is good to know!!

  • Reduce bad breath!

Its powerful antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties kill bacteria in your mouth when used as an antiseptic mouthwash and reduce bad breath, fight tooth decay, dental plaque and gingivitis (gum disease). I swish my mouth with coconut oil for about 10 minutes then brush my teeth. It is called oil pulling. Already in Ancient times, it was a popular Indian dental treatment.

  • Use it as a deodorant!

Again, its antibacterial components kill bacteria that produce bad odors on your skin. It can be used as a natural deodorant which has no harmful chemicals.

Warnings

Though the MCTs rich in lauric acid are high in coconut oil, let’s not forget that it is also very high in saturated fat. It is recommended to consume it with moderation, not exceeding 2 tablespoons per day.

Final note

Because coconut oil is so rich in saturated fats, there are conflicting reports concerning its health benefits, however, this “super food” has been part of the Malaysians’ diet for several generations. These populations remain in excellent health while eating a great amount of coconuts.

The safe way to consume it is by making sure that it is extra-virgin organic coconut oil because it isn’t harshly processed.

Coconut oil can last up to six months without spoiling.

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21 Comments

  1. I knew coconut oil was good for a few things, but definitely not all of the above! Really interesting facts!

    1. Anne-Caroline says:

      Me neither until I did some thorough researching!! 🙂

  2. Great article. Personally I use coconut oil for just about everything. It’s one of those staples in my house like virgin vinegar. My recommendation to to ensure that it’s virgin and organic, as you stated above. The quality is what makes it so universal.

    Thanks!
    Beth

  3. I have heard both sides on coconut oil and tend to agree with your assessment. I didn’t know all of the various applications it has and am interested in trying some of them, like the mouthwash use for instance. Thanks for such an informative and interesting presentation. I appreciate it.

    1. Anne-Caroline says:

      I didn’t know about all these benefits either until I did my research to write this article! Thank you!

  4. Stefan says:

    Hi Anne,

    Coconut oil has some incredible benefits for the body and, and I think everyone should use it.
    You are right in saying that coconut oil can be used as a deodorant. I just bought an Aluminiun-free deodorant that has coconut oil.
    I learned a lot from your article, thanks for sharing!

    1. Anne-Caroline says:

      Right! You see coconut oil in many cosmetics now! Thank you!

  5. Hi,
    First, let me say that we visited France for the first time this year and we loved it! Great country!
    Second, love your site and I totally agree about coconut oil! I use it on my face, hair, and skin! Not only does it work great, but it is also all natural and a lot cheaper than store bought creams! It can’t be beat!
    I also like to whip it a little and then stuff it in dates, super yummy!
    Thanks for the education (I didn’t know how great it was for cholesterol).
    Lisa

    1. Anne-Caroline says:

      Glad to hear that you enjoyed your trip to France!!:)Yes I use coconut oil everyday. I love the smell too!!

  6. I love coconut and had no idea it has so many health benefits. I’ve never used coconut oil though, and particularly like the idea of using it as a breath freshener! Oil pulling sounds intriguing, and I’ll be looking it up on Google now!! I also like the idea of using it as a skin moisturiser and hair conditioner.

    1. Anne-Caroline says:

      Yes try it out as a mouthwash!It’s a wonderful product indeed!!

  7. Rodarrick says:

    Coconut oil has always been a great addition that I never for once let my home lack because I know about its health benefits but I never knew it could be used for infections. Knowing this actually feels good and I feel anytime I see any infection, I can always recommend it out. The coconut oil is of so much benefits and it is really great to read all these about it. This is spot on and thanks for the knowledge shared

    1. Anne-Caroline says:

      It is great that it can be used as a balm to treat infections as well! Thank you!

  8. Jones says:

    Since I’ve been young, my mum always use coconut oil very well and I grew up to love it. These health benefits are really true because coconut itself is a very useful fruit and it’s been confirmed medically to be good for human Health. Most times, my main use of coconut oil is for my hair and it’s been really effective. I recommend it for people who suffers hair breakage and damage, it works perfectly. Thanks for sharing this educative article, i like it .

    1. Anne-Caroline says:

      Thank you for sharing your experience! It is a great cosmetic product, and it smells so good!! 🙂

  9. Thank you for this great article. I can’t believe that 20 years ago, they said coconut oil was unhealthy! Wow, now it is the complete opposite. Do all these benefits come from eating it, or do some come from applying it to your skin? Anyhow, there were a lot I didn’t know. I have been eating coconut oil for a couple years now so I will continue. 

    Do you lose any health benefits with “refined” coconut oil vs “unrefined”? I usually get organic/unrefined because it smells/tastes more like coconuts. Thanks for your expertise on the subject and have a great day!

    1. Anne-Caroline says:

      These benefits come both from eating it and applying it to our skin. The ‘unrefined’ is the healthy kind because it isn’t processed that is why it tastes more like coconuts!!

  10. Shelley says:

    Wow! Coconut oil has some great benefits that if I never took the time out to read it through this website posy, I might never have known that they exist. This is interesting to know of. Considering the immense benefits attached to it, why is it that most people do not use it because it is perfectly organic. I like this and I will start making use of it consistently. Cheers

    1. Anne-Caroline says:

      Right, it is not a product that we use often here in Europe and America that is why people do not use it and do not know of its benefits!!

  11. Abayomi says:

    Excellent article on Top 15 coconut oil’s health benefits,from my youthful age I’ve loved eating coconut and I derive satisfaction from it,especially the aroma of the oil in it,the coconut composition;Coconut oil is extracted from the white meat inside of coconuts. 60% of coconut oil is composed of 3 fatty acids: Caprylic acid, Lauric acid and Capric acid. (MCFA’s, medium-chain fatty acids),the benefits are amazing increasing the number of calories burnt and are rapidly absorbed and converted into energy by the liver,I have started using coconut oil as my cream,the aroma is great,personally I desire using it,thank you for sharing this benefits to all,kudos to your writing prowess.

    1. Anne-Caroline says:

      Awe thank you!! I love the arome of coconut oil and love to eat it as well! It is so good and filling.

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