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Guys, I’m sorry to tell you this, but coconut oil is pure poison. Yes, it’s very very dangerous. I know it’s been given to a lot of cultures over the last 2,000 years and they didn’t have a problem, but it’s just been recognized by the experts that it’s very dangerous.
Here’s the reality: coconuts are only dangerous if they are traveling at your head and you don’t duck. That’s the only danger in a coconut.
But let’s back it up. First, let’s explain why “experts” today consider coconut oil to be poison - and then let’s discuss what’s really going on.
In this article:
- Misinformation About Coconut Oil
- What They Ignored
- The True Information
- Why the Misinformation?
First: The Misinformation that Turned People Against Coconut Oil
People have started to say that coconut is pure poison because it’s saturated fat (unlike oils like olive oil, which is a monounsaturated - or "healthy" - fatty acid).
Now, they didn’t come to this conclusion based on studies where people consumed the oil and had a heart attack.
Instead, they honed in on the saturated fats, operating on the premise that everyone knows that consuming saturated fats will clog your arteries and cause coronary heart disease (CHD).
That’s a fact, right?
Wrong. This is actually an example of false data.
Unfortunately, though, even though it’s false, the American Heart Association (AHA) accepted this information. They started telling physicians that their patients needed to replace these saturated fat products with vegetable oils.
What They Ignored
What’s worse, some of the studies that the American Heart Association used to prove the link between saturated fats and heart disease were not basing their findings on diets high in saturated fats alone. Instead, they based their conclusions on diets that were high in saturated fats and high in carbohydrates.
If you mix high carbohydrates with high protein or high fat, you are going to get CHD. But it’s the carbohydrates that cause the CHD, not the saturated fats.
They ignored this.
They also ignored three very large studies here:
These major studies do not show a link between saturated fats and coronary heart disease (CHD) at all. And there’s a lot more to back that up as well.
Here’s the True Information
Coconut oil contains many compounds and health benefits that make it healthy for the body. These include:
High Percentage MCT
Coconut oil is 70% medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs). These medium-chain fatty acids don't convert to fat in the body. Instead, MCTs are used as energy, and they’re really good to induce more fat burning.
In other words, MCT triglycerides can - somewhat counterintuitively - actually help you lose weight. As calories, they are also typically used right away, and they are very rarely stored a fat.
MCT fatty acids are also very friendly to your liver and gallbladder. Digesting this fat doesn’t involve a lot of bile or a lot of work from the liver, unlike something like beef fat or lard. Instead, it immediately goes right into the lymph system through your intestines, and it’s used right away for energy.
This makes it a really healthy fat for anyone with liver problems or gallbladder issues.
50% Lauric Acid
50% of coconut oil is lauric acid. There are only two or three common foods - palm oil, coconut oil, and breast milk - that are rich in lauric acid. And this is something that you do want to incorporate into your diet.
Lauric acid is a very powerful anti-viral and anti-microbial type of fatty acid. It helps decrease viruses, it helps your immune system and it’s really good for candida and funguses. So it’s a good thing for your immune system.
Good For Ketosis
When you get into ketosis, you need a snack that’s high in fat to help you to go from one meal to the next. That’s one of the reasons that I provide a lot of recipes on how to make delicious, filling keto fat bombs.
These recipes are to give people ideas on how to camouflage coconut oil. Because, the thing is, you need it.
Why, exactly? The whole point of ketosis is that you want to burn fat instead of sugar for fuel. It’s a more efficient and natural source of fuel, and it will make you feel better and leaner over time. This, somewhat counterintuitively, requires a diet high in fat (and very low in carbohydrates). Why? Because fat is the only macronutrient that doesn’t spike insulin, or sugar, in the body. Both protein and carbohydrates do cause a spike. What’s worse - even if you do consume high-fat meals, any large meal will cause some spike, even if it’s small. So you want to combine a keto diet with intermittent fasting.
The keto part will reduce insulin spikes from proteins and carbs, while the fasting part will prevent spikes that come from eating large meals.
It’s worth it, but it’s tough - and little snacks high in coconut oil will help get you through. They’ll help you consume more fat to allow you to not be so hungry as you fast and go from one meal to the next.
Some studies suggest that coconut oil actually promotes good cholesterol and that it can help improve your cholesterol profiles. One study, in particular, found that coconut oil reduced total LDL (or bad cholesterol) and increased HDL (good cholesterol) in a group of 40 women. This, in turn, can actually lower your risk of heart disease.
Improves Dental Health
A few years ago, a practice called oil pulling became really popular in the US. The practice has been popular in India and in traditional ayurvedic medicine for generations. It’s supposed to lead to less dental disease along with stronger teeth and gums.
So how does it work? The idea is to swish about a tablespoon of virgin coconut oil - or even olive oil - around your mouth for 20 minutes before you eat breakfast in the morning.
It sounds like a long time, I know, but the practice really works.
- Damage the cell wall of microorganisms in the mouth and kill them
- Remove bacteria responsible for dental caries, gingivitis, periodontitis, and bad breath
- Resolve bleeding gums and allow gums to become pinker and healthier
- Resolve symptoms of dry mouth and dry throat
- Whiten teeth and freshen breath
That said, it’s not meant to replace your existing dental care practices. It’s supposed to compliment them.
Soothes Skin Concerns
Applying this oil as a moisturizer has also become pretty popular in recent years, especially as people try to avoid parabens and other potentially harsh ingredients.
This, too, has some tried-and-true benefits:
- Studies show that, when applied to dry skin, coconut oil can truly improve the moisture content of the skin. It can also help prevent transepidermal water loss, which is largely responsible for dry skin.
- It can soothe conditions like dermatitis and eczema
- It can provide anti-inflammatory benefits by suppressing inflammatory markers in the skin
- It can even work as a mild sunscreen for skin and hair, blocking about 20% of the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays. That’s not enough to replace normal sunscreen, of course, but it is certainly worth noting.
Why The Misinformation?
The coconut industry did not sponsor the American Heart Association like some of the other industries did. The food industry, the drug industry, they all basically spent 521 million dollars in 2011 and 2012 to get the stamp of approval from the AHA. This money made a difference.
There’s something else called the heart-check food certification. The American Heart Association basically endorses different products and says they are heart healthy if they pay. I think companies have to spend something like $700,000 a year just to have that endorsement.
Conclusion: Coconuts are OK
Anyway, the bottom line is that you don’t have to worry that coconut oil is poisonous. It’s actually very healthy, it’s been around for a long time, and there are many studies that show that it actually lowers your bad cholesterol or LDL.
Now go ahead and comment below and tell me what your thoughts are on this.
Disclaimer: Our educational content is not meant or intended for medical advice or treatment.
Editor’s Note: This post has been updated for quality and relevancy.