Much maligned for years as a saturated fat, we’ll bring you truth regarding the incredible health properties of coconut oil.
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is rapidly becoming an international epidemic. The mainstream medical mantra for its underlying cause is "fat consumption." However, "fat" is a very general term and does not distinguish between traditional healthy fats and unhealthy modern processed fats and oils. The common belief is that saturated fat is the culprit in fatty liver disease, but a new study published in the July 4, 2017 European Journal of Nutrition comes to a different conclusion. This peer reviewed study, "Chronic consumption of fructose in combination with trans fatty acids but not with saturated fatty acids induces nonalcoholic steatohepatitis with fibrosis in rats," examined more closely the effects of trans fatty acids (from vegetable oils derived from corn and soybeans) versus saturated fats, found in traditional fats such as butter, coconut oil, and palm oil. The study’s title gives away their conclusion: fructose is bad for the liver, but it is worse with trans fats than it is with saturated fats.
In what appears to be a coordinated attack against the rising popularity of coconut oil, the American Heart Association (AHA) has just published a "Presidential Advisory" on "Dietary Fats and Cardiovascular Disease" in which it condemned coconut oil, and recommended that people not consume it. The AHA's recommendation clearly contradicts research that exists on not only coconut oil but saturated fats in general, which debunks the old lipid theory of heart disease that saturated fat and cholesterol cause heart disease. Yet, the mainstream corporate-funded media published its recommendations with no critical analysis or journalistic investigations into the AHA's claims. Are these attacks against coconut oil part of an effort by Big Pharma to protect its $100 billion a year cholesterol lowering statin drug industry?
The health ramifications of virgin coconut oil keep surfacing from international studies without much coverage from mainstream media health or food sections. Fortunately, Health Impact News and their CoconutOil.com website is the leading authority today on the health benefits of coconut oil, keeping you up-to-date on all the published research about coconut oil you will never read in the mainstream corporate media. There has been a lot of text and talk about the wonders of coconut oil’s medium chain fatty acids and how they benefit the brain by producing ketones for brain cells’ functional nutrition. Ketones can even reverse Alzheimer’s disease. Of course, the pharmaceutical industry and their support of the mainstream media would like to keep that information from being known. There are even folks losing weight with high-fat ketogenic dieting, which includes the saturated fat coconut oil and other whole unadulterated healthy fats, to debunk the unscientific dogma of saturated fats as responsible for obesity. Many studies have demonstrated coconut oil’s antifungal and antibacterial capabilities as well. Now we have coconut oil demonstrating powerful antioxidant potential, even powerful enough for reducing the biological stress of chemotherapy. Here are two new studies that point this out.
There are several testimonials by people using virgin coconut oil (VCO) for improving scalp conditions, hair, and skin issues. But it’s doubtful that a certified dermatologist would recommend that for most skin issues. It’s more likely that an external skin condition known as atopic dermatitis (AD), which causes excess dryness, inflammation, and pruritus (itching) will be prescribed a cortecosteroid cream to apply topically. The University of Central Florida Medical School offered a paper published early in 2017 titled “Coconut oil: The future of atopic dermatitis treatment?” Overall, VCO appears to be an emerging treatment for AD due to its safety and ability to both combat the suggested pathogenesis of AD and provide clinical improvement. More extensive trials that comprehensively examine the positive and negative effects of treating AD with VCO are indicated.
There are many empirical episodes of improving memory and slowing or reversing dementia with coconut oil that are dismissed as “anecdotal.” Fortunately there are increasing scientific studies that corroborate the many remarkable testimonies of recovering from dementia to perhaps convince naysayers of coconut oil’s health and healing properties. The in-vivo (animal) study “Enhanced memory in Wistar rats by virgin coconut oil is associated with increased antioxidative, cholinergic activities and reduced oxidative stress” was published in January of 2017. The research paper stated as part of its findings: "The promising outcomes of this study strongly imply the possible use of VCO, not only as neuroprotective agents for those suffering from neurodegenerative diseases, but also as brain food." A Canadian study published this year around the same time titled “Coconut oil protects cortical neurons from amyloid beta toxicity by enhancing signaling of cell survival pathways” observed that coconut oil and its medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs) protect against amyloid beta (Aβ) induced neurotoxicity in primary rat cortical neurons.
A study published in January 2017 in Nigeria shows the hepatoprotective effect of virgin coconut oil when used with MTX cancer chemotherapy. Chemotherapy drugs are known for damaging the liver. Unlike the U.S., where government dietary advice is still against saturated fats and coconut oil, many of the coconut-producing countries are learning that their traditional diets high in saturated fats, and specifically coconut oil, are actually healthy. There is a wide body of research now looking at the health benefits of coconut oil, specifically virgin coconut oil, which is less refined than machine-made commercial coconut oils. The current study from Nigeria acknowledges that the "emerging health benefit of virgin coconut oil (VCO) has been associated with its potent natural antioxidants." So they designed a study using rats to see if virgin coconut oil and its antioxidant properties could protect the liver against oxidative stress caused by chemotherapy cancer drugs. They saw a definite improvement in liver function from the group that consumed virgin coconut oil.
There have been numerous studies on lauric acid for various health supporting factors. Did you know that virgin coconut oil is 50 percent or more lauric acid? So whatever healthy attributes lauric acid contains so does coconut oil, and more. And more will be explained later in this article. For now we’ll focus on coconut oil’s major component, lauric acid, and a recent animal study with dramatic results discovered for reducing hypertension (high blood pressure) and oxidative stress.
A recent study on a new anti-inflammatory antioxidant natural remedy, with the main ingredient being coconut oil, shows positive signs of being the go-to remedy for those who want relief from rheumatoid arthritis without the side effects of pharmaceuticals that are not so effective.
Dr. Malcom Kendrick is a Scottish doctor and author of the book The Great Cholesterol Con. Recently he wrote a blog post on saturated fat and cardiovascular disease. He commented on how the science actually proves the opposite conclusion from what is commonly believed about saturated fats: To be honest, I have studied saturated fat consumption many, many… many, many, times. The one thing that has always stood out, most starkly, is the complete lack of any real evidence to support the idea that it causes cardiovascular disease. On the other hand, evidence contradicting it arrives on an almost daily basis.
The term "ketogenic" is derived from attaching the suffix "-genic" to the word "ketone." Ketones are produced in the liver from fat. As ketones are produced more, a state of ketosis is created. Ketosis allows fat to be converted into energy instead of storing it as fat. Ketosis even promotes reducing existing excess body fat by converting it into energy. One of the most efficient saturated fats for ketosis is virgin coconut oil. Instead of long chain triglycerides that most other healthy fats contain, coconut oil is comprised of medium chain triglycerides, which are most easily converted into ketones. So consuming healthy fats, not trans-fat substitutes, and cutting back considerably on processed or refined carbohydrates is proving to increase health and reduce obesity and all the problems associated with it, including diabetes and heart disease.