(NaturalNews) Sorting through fact and fiction when it comes to weight loss is a tough order, especially when fad diets spring to life and wither away all in the same season. Many claims have been made about coconut oil and weight loss, but a number of whole food enthusiasts know this one is the real deal. And that's because coconut oil is more than a weight loss aid: it's a well-documented health food. Take it from experts like Dr. Bruce Fife and Dr. Mary Enig, both of whom speak volumes about the merits of coconut oil, when they vouch for its credibility. Coconut oil really can help you lost weight, and here's three reasons why:
#1 Get a Metabolism Boost
Coconut oil is one of the most abundant sources of medium-chain fatty acids, and these nifty little triglycerides can work wonders for a sluggish metabolism. In a study that looked at the effect of medium-chain fatty acids on metabolism, it was found that these fats could increase the metabolic rate by up to 48 percent and for up to 24 hours. If your metabolism has been damaged by dieting or stress, a daily dose of coconut oil can do wonders for getting it back on the right track.
#2 Balance Your Blood Sugar
The profound effect coconut oil seems to have on the metabolism extends to insulin function as well. This may be because coconut oil can supply the body with energy similar to blood glucose, but without having a negative impact on blood sugar and insulin levels. Including coconut oil before or during a meal also lowers the glycemic impact of what you're eating, which prevents those dreaded blood sugar highs and lows.
#3 Cure Candida and Yeast Overgrowth
The beneficial fatty acids in coconut oil do more than speed up a lagging metabolism. Lauric acid and caprylic acid in coconut oil also protect against one of the hidden causes behind weight gain: candida and yeast. When an overgrowth of candida is present, weight loss can be almost impossible. Candida causes symptoms like fatigue, poor concentration, recurring infections related to yeast, excessive sinus infections, and much more. But the side effect that really hinders weight loss is cravings for sugar and carbohydrates. This is because yeast feeds off sugar (carbohydrates break down into sugar once in the body), so it causes cravings in order to support its own life.
Taking coconut oil to counteract yeast overgrowth is highly effective, but it should be done with care. Coconut oil is such a powerful remedy for candida that it can cause strong symptoms of headaches, chills, and foggy thinking as the yeast dies off. This can be reduced by slowly incorporating coconut oil into your diet, starting with as little as one teaspoon daily.
More Than Just a Fad
Coconut oil didn't spring to life in the last few years, although it may seem that way. The truth is that coconut has been a healing superfood for centuries in tropical cultures. These people value coconut and its derivatives for their tremendous medicinal power - and they are remarkably healthy as a result. Even in Western society, coconut oil found widely popular uses until the middle of the 20th century, when coconut oil's reputation took a bashing from researchers who examined the health impact of hydrogenated coconut oil - basically the evil twin of the real thing. But thanks to experts who are willing to give a genuine look into coconut oil's benefits, we now can be assured that this oil is a bonafide health food.
Tips for Taking Coconut Oil:
- Don't settle for the cheap brands found next to shortening on grocery store shelves. Much of this coconut oil is hydrogenated, which negates all of its benefits. In addition, this is commercially-processed coconut oil that has been stripped of its natural properties. The best type of coconut oil is the extra-virgin unrefined variety, which will retain its light aroma and taste in addition to its amazing health benefits.
- Even if you don't suspect candida, it's still wise to introduce coconut oil into your diet slowly. The body can react strangely when it's unfamiliar with such a nutritious food. Start with about one teaspoon once per day, and gradually increase to at least three tablespoons daily. This amount will help you reap the maximum benefits from this incredible tropical superfood.
Fife. Bruce. Coconut Cures. (2004) Published by Piccadilly Books.
Enig, Mary and Fallon, Sally. Eat Fat, Lose Fat: Lose Weight And Feel Great With The Delicious, Science-based Coconut Diet (2004) Published by Hudson Street Press.
About the author
Elizabeth Walling is a freelance writer specializing in health and family nutrition. She is a strong believer in natural living as a way to improve health and prevent modern disease. She enjoys thinking outside of the box and challenging common myths about health and wellness. You can visit her blog to learn more: www.livingthenourishedlife.com/2009/10/welco...